I was the Senior Director of Strategy, UX, Design and Execution at Ask.com when they were searching for a way to differentiate from Google and other search engines. My contribution to the effort was to reimagine what the core search product when it was focused on content and engagement, rather than pure text-driven results with fast click throughs to other websites.
In addition to leading the UX team, I participated in a hands-on way by delivering wireframes, site maps, and also conducting an internal research effort with all departments within the business. The redesign also focused heavily on striking a balance between monetization goals, user needs and overall product usability. The resulting design encouraged exploration, discovery while aspiring to answer some of life’s bigger questions. We nearly matched our monetization goals in 3 rounds of user testing while receiving very positive feedback from users.
To support this new direction, my team also undertook a major effort to rebuild the product’s front end codebase. We learned CSS, SASS, HAML, and LESS. The end result was a new framework that was able to generate error free code while perfectly maintaining the UI direction. Prior to having this new framework in place, product changes could take days. With it, our team could implement changes in a matter of minutes.