Illustration showing hand using a mobile phone
Illustration showing hand using a mobile phone

Design Sprint helps Australian proptech startup validate business idea in 2 weeks time

Category: B2CDesign SprintEcommerceTechnology
Scope of work: Design SprintDesign Strategy & ConsultationUser ResearchUX DesignPrototypingTesting & Validation
Product: Homepal Mobile App
Sofa with Homepal logo overlayed
HomePal is a funded proptech startup that aspires to be the go-to platform for tenants & home owners to find furnitures & services that suit their lifestyle.

As part of HomePal’s seed funding strategy, Relab was engaged to help the venture discover opportunities, identify risks and validate market appetite based on the proposition that the founders believed in.

The user needs

There are multiple actors involved involved in HomePal’s ecosystem; the tenants, property investors, homeowners, real estate agents, service provider partners and also HomePal’s own team member acting as Admin.

Instead of diving deep into every single user segment, we identified a single key user (proto-persona) to focus on, which represents the potential majority of HomePal’s market. The proto-persona identified was an investor who would like to easily find property listings and enjoy added value convenience like interior design, furniture packages and cleaning services. This group of audience are modern day professionals who has a busy lifestyle, loves aesthetics and looking for the best “bang for buck” to their inner city investment. Their goal is to get tenants quickly so they can be ROI positive in no time.

The business needs

The venture started off with a vision to provide the most intuitive, simple and easy-to-use platform for renters and buyers to be connected with tailored lifestyle packages that suits their needs. The vision was grand and progressive, with machine learning requirements involved in the tech plan. In short, the projected capital expanditure was massive for a seed round startup. HomePal needed a low-risk solution that can help them validate the vision and what’s realistically worth betting on the table.

Having heard of the Google Ventures Design Sprint process that seemed to be just the thing HomePal needed then, Relab was approached to help facilitate the process, while also providing expert advice on Service Design and UX/UI Design for the digital product.

Two people stand and pointing at a wireframe sketch
Our approach
Challenge the vision. Address the risks. Identify quick wins. Listen to the user’s needs. Prioritise.

Upon initial consultation, Relab recommended a 2 week Design Sprint program that allowed us us to run a 5 Day Design Sprint + an Iteration Sprint week.

On Sprint 1, we addressed and validated business questions around its user needs; back office systems to support the user needs; priorities of features; and interface design ideas. Within 5 days, we had produced a high fidelity prototype that was tested by the proto-personas through a user testing session. The outcome allowed the team to reflect and iterate in Sprint 2, where we addressed specific questions around clarity of products and offering.

In 2 weeks time, HomePal had a clear idea on what is worth investing based on real user feedback. The process enabled HomePal to reflect on their vision and objectively map out priorities and budget for their Minimum Viable Product (MVP) launch.

User quote "I'd like to personalise it to exactly my own specifications. User interface showing customisability.
Human centred
Designed for the end user

Our innovative process sits within the intersection of business goals and user needs.

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Low risk. High value.
Reduce capital expanditure risks

The user validated process allowed the venture to move forward confidently onto the MVP production.

Design sprint schedule
FAST & Productive
Months of work compressed into 2 weeks

The proven methodical process increased team productivity into folds, giving the business an edge with its go-to-market strategy.

Builds customer-obsessed culture

The Design Sprint inspired HomePal’s product team to embed the mindset in their daily practice

Huge savings on production budget

The process helped the venture save a chunk of budget that would otherwise be wasted in build & development

Allowed for quick pivot and iteration

For startups, being nimble is one of the keys to success and the Design Sprint process did exactly that at HomePal

The design thinking mindset that Relab brought to us was extremely valuable in accelerating our product design progress. The Design Sprint taught us the customer-centric mindset. Relab sets a great example for us moving forward without doubt.
Wayne Gao
Wayne GaoCEO & Co-Founder, HomePal (Furnishd)

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