Design drill down #1
Welcome to our new series, where each month an 11:FS designer will share their favourite design moments from financial services + interesting reads.
Too often a brand's good intentions stop at marketing campaigns and social posts
De-bunqing purposeful design
Bunq has been a beacon for purposeful design and originality for years. Too often a brand's good intentions stop at marketing campaigns and social posts, and very rarely find their way into the core user journey of a product. The Dutch neobank has courageously broken that mould and delivered some seriously slick features that help their customers make more conscious decisions on a daily basis.
Easy Green account: With an Easy Green account (€16.99/month) Bunq plants trees for every €100 spent on their cards. But tree planting based on spend isn't entirely new – it's the suite of clever features, notifications, visualisations and counters that drive home the impact one of their customers can have on the environment.
Tribes: Bunq knows that there's power in the collective and working towards a common goal can multiply an individual’s impact. Or, they know people are inherently competitive and are capitalising on this by introducing a tree planting leaderboard. Whatever the motive, no one can argue that a race to plant trees is one worth being a part of.
The itemisation opportunity
There's not a whole lotta UI on show from this backstage brand, but I'd be remiss if I didn't shout out my fintech one-to-watch, the UK-based digital receipt company, Flux. As a brand built on integrations, I'm sure their designers could give an amazing lesson on systems thinking and delivering product through another brand's UI.
A quick rundown of the product – after integrating with your Monzo, Starling or Barclays account, any transaction from a list of partnered retailers such as KFC, Itsu and JustEat, will offer a fully itemised digital receipt to use as you please. And that use case is really critical, but right now, it feels limited. I can't think of what else I'd use the receipts for other than personal bookkeeping.
I'm putting expense-ready VAT receipts and itemised bill splits on my Christmas wishlist.
But it's the opportunity for what the receipts could do for me. So Flux designers, if you’re listening, I'm putting expense-ready VAT receipts and itemised bill splits on my Christmas wishlist.
Laying it on with Figjam
There's been a lot of fanfare around Figma's new collaborative whiteboarding tool Figjam, reaching the top of the leaderboard on Product Hunt on launch day and getting mention across major tech news outlets like Tech Crunch.
The product is currently in beta and is understandably limited in its functionality, though it's slimmed-down featureset and expectedly intuitive interface makes quick work of competing product Miro, and I expect it to bring the fight to Mural with it's lower starting price following the free-to-play beta phase ($8 p/m vs $12 p/m) and highly engaged community of contributors.
But what next for Figma? They've already captured a great deal of the product design tool market from the likes of Sketch, Adobe and Invision, and seem to be developing products that go beyond the realms of design.
My prediction is a challenger to Google slides and/or an attempt to bridge the gap between design tool and web builder, like 11:FS favourite, Webflow.
Got your own prediction for what Figma might be working on next? Let us know!
Lastly, I wanted to share my favourite design-related article from the last month, which explains the anatomy of all design thinking workshops and almost breaks it down into its atomic structure. Give this a read if you find yourself stuck on what activities to use in a workshop and in what order!