“Are my solar panels even working?”
Sunrun, founded in 2007, is the largest North American provider of residential solar energy, providing over 250,000 households with clean, sustainable power. They operate in 23 states, including Puerto Rico.
MySunrun, an energy monitoring service, is an app where customers can monitor their solar energy and battery storage, and connect to the sun itself. MySunrun is how customers view their relationship with solar.
Limited communication and lack of solar education caused frequent cancellations and an overflow of calls into customer service.
Project Director - Creative direction, user experience, and team building. Created alignment and managed cross-department collaboration. Lead the redesign and MVP launch of the company's customer mobile experience, bringing it in-line with user needs and business growth.
This project was made possible by a senior product designer, an engineering manager, a senior engineer, and two front-end developers. Extended team included a design researcher, visual designer, content strategiest, and business analyst.
Reduced customer care calls by 70%, 15k a month.
Improved customer retention and education.
Introduced design process and operations.
User Research & Synthesis
“I feel like I need a PhD! I don’t understand solar, my bill, anything.”
“Are my solar panels even working?”
“I don’t know if I made the right decision to go solar. I can't even explain the benefits to my friends.”
Participants were selected based on:
We included standard scheduling, compensation, and consent forms. This research was later validated as part of an in-depth marketing initiative within the company.
"EMPTY NEST" PERSONA
People typically between 60-80, may be retired or self-employed, and looking to optimize. Motivation priority: save money, and then save environment.
"NEW HOME" PERSONA
Gen-X and Millennials buying their first homes, usually with young families. Motivation priority: save environment, and then save money.
Upon going solar, customers can go through an unconscious surge usage, adopting behaviors of energy abundance due to the mindset that clean energy is free energy.
However, the average home solar installation can only cover 30% - 60% of a household's energy needs. The rest of the home's power comes from the local utility.
As a result, customers find themselves with larger utility bills after their first month of solar, causing confusion and doubt about their long-term decision.
Be informed and able to confidently answer questions about solar.
Build a trusting relationship with the solar company, and their 25-year contract.
Feel they are having a positive impact on the planet, and peace-of-mind in their decision.
Roadmap & MVP Prioritization
Due to user confusion, the Customer Care center was overwhelmed with questions that could more effectively be answered through FAQs and chatbots.
Product business goals included:
Design & UX
Limited budget for user testing meant creating a bootstrapped testing strategy specific to each stage of fidelity. Developed scripts and spreadsheets to log tests.
Testing for usability, overall comprehension, navigation and discoverability.
Testing for duration, and completion of key interactions
Tone and voice for overall content and messaging (including help text, error messages, and alignment on consistent language between product, care, and sales)
Branding, Assets, Icons, and Infographics.
Once elements and flows were finalized, they were transfered to a React framework, and became the foundational blocks for the company’s first design system.
HARDWARE & DATA
Our biggest constraint in delivering a behavior-changing experience came down to data availability and frequency.
This made it difficult to create a universal real-time experience for customers. In many cases, data would be delayed by 24 to 48 hours, decreasing its usefulness to users.
Data discovery on this project highlighted these infrastructure inconsistencies, and kicked-off an initiative to update and build a more robust energy monitoring system.
Sunrun develops and maintains a small suite of internal software for energy monitoring, sales, and installation. MySunrun is the only customer-facing application, and as such, it is a representative of Sunrun’s mission and brand.
As part of our MVP launch, it was important to showcase this new experience to leadership and employees within the company. We wanted to get the employees excited for the product, its new features, and how it represents the company.
With MySunrun, it had been years since a customer-facing, pulic software launch happened within the company. As such, communication channels and an aligned launch framework needed to be strategically developed along with the MVP rollout.
Creating a scalable launch strategy that all teams were aligned on included:
My Sunrun 2020
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Hope is like the sun.
© ERIS STASSI 2020