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About the company

Elsevier is a Netherlands-based global leader in information and analytics for customers across the global research and health ecosystems. They help researchers and healthcare professionals advance science and improve health outcomes for the benefit of society.

I joined Elsevier as a UX generalist.

I initially started out working in the User Privacy Center, but soon was requested to assist various squads from different products.

  • User Privacy Center
    Conducted research and worked with various stakeholders to create designs that met users’ needs for transparency and control of their personal data
  • Science Direct
    Solved UX challenges in various key product features, such as the display of article author names and the article cite feature
  • Data Monitor
    Led the design of key user features and pages in the newest release of the product
  • UX Research
    I conducted an internal research project for the UX Research department to investigate product and design employees’ experiences with our online design portal

User Privacy Center

The challenge

How do we instill a sense of trust in Elsevier, through providing our customers with transparency and control of their personal data?

My role
  • User research and testing
  • UI design of upcoming features and discovery
  • Collaborating with other stakeholders to design new features within the constraints
  • Interface updates to align with unique integration scenarios
User research and testing

I designed and conducted a combined user research and testing study, to find out more about our users’ concerns and to get feedback on a potential UI redesign.

We aimed to speak with 10 customers from various countries, asking them to rate various privacy related concerns on a scale of 1-5. Then users would test 2 Figma interactive prototypes – of the current Privacy Center, and the new redesign. The order in which they saw the prototypes was alternated.


Unfortunately, due to cancellations and low English proficiency, we were only able to use the data from 5 interviews. However the data was fairly consistent between the 5, so we decided not to invest further time and effort into recruiting more participants.

Some valuable insights that we gained from our research included:

  • Users found the current version easier to navigate and locate important features, particularly because of the filters in the side bar
  • They liked the “tabs” design in the redesign
  • They wanted the “activity history” page to be fleshed out with more filters and features
  • Several people wanted reassurance that their data would not be sold to third parties

Science Direct

The challenges

How do we design the user flow to the new author profile pages?

How can we improve the cite/export feature on the article and search results pages?

My role
  • UX, interaction design
  • UI design, collaboration with front-end prototyper
  • User testing
Author profile page user flow puzzle

I was requested to come on board with Science Direct to help solve a complex design problem – redesign the way an article’s author names are displayed and linked, to coincide with the launch of author profile pages.

This problem was complex in several ways:

  • The main user need is to find an author’s email address
  • Some, but not all, authors have an author profile page
  • All authors must in some way link to a slide-in side bar on the article page, which contains information not available on the profile page, such as the email address
  • The author profile page will never display the email address
  • You can’t link to the author profile page from the side bar, for SEO reasons

I began untangling this problem by speaking with several stakeholders, and working alongside the product manager to define potential user flows.

From discussions with the department’s head of UX, we concluded that there was no perfect solution to the puzzle, due to the many constraints.

I worked with our front-end prototyper to test out 3 possible solutions.

After testing them with a few stakeholders, it became obvious that we needed a hybrid of options 1 & 3. I reworked the Figma mockups and made a chart to clearly define the interaction and design in each use case.

I facilitated a meeting with the product manager and owner to present the final prototype before handing it over to developers.

This project is ongoing as the author pages are not yet live.

Improving the cite feature

Pendo survey feedback showed that users were extremely unsatisfied with the current “cite” feature on the article pages. The predominant pain point was, “I need to be able to copy and paste”.

Quantitative Pendo data showed that many users attempted to access the cite feature, but most then gave up. This suggests that it did not meet most users’ needs.

I began by speaking with various stakeholders, including UX researchers and researchers from [reference management platform] Mendeley, to thoroughly understand the problem space and gain insight into user needs.

I also looked at how some of our competitors, to get an idea of how other companies worked to meet users’ expectations.

From this discovery stage, I learned:

  • “Citation” and “reference” are two different but related words, but are sometimes used interchangeably
  • Many users use a reference manager such as Mendeley to store and organise their references/citations
  • Some of these users directly import via a file, and some copy and paste the citation text into the program
  • There are many different “styles” of citation, depending on the journal and classification

I recorded my learnings in Figma.

I created a couple of mock ups, based on my knowledge of the problem and our competitors’ designs.

I also collaborated with the copywriter to design a more in-depth Pendo survey to make sure we had more information about the various use cases.

After presenting the designs so far to the product owner, I received approval of the design and to launch the survey.

This project is ongoing.

Data Monitor

The challenge

How do we guide users to, and help them to utilise, our new repositories page?

My role
  • UX, interaction design
  • UI design
Repositories page

Following industry standard, Data Monitor’s new site required a page to allow users to find specific respositories.

I analysed some of our competitors’ solutions, and designed in accordance with existing UI elements and styles of the Data Monitor product.

The greatest challenge of this project was the technical limitations – many types of data that other sites displayed, such as the country and designation of the repository, were not accessible in our system. This had a detrimental affect on usability for the MVP, but will potentially be implemented in the future.

This project is ongoing.