Xello

Formally known as CareerCruising, Xello empowers K-12 students to build self-knowledge, personalized plans, and critical life skills to ensure a successful future.

Overview

How Might We Bridge the Gap Between Students and Employers?

The transition from high-school to post-secondary or the world of work is incredibly broken. We've all been there and done that. Is there a way to avoid students graduating with debt they can't pay off? Or ending up unemployed or underemployed upon graduation? 

That's what me and the team at Xello strove to discover. We redefined an industry leading work-based learning program to help engineer a better way for students to gain experience early on so that they could make more informed decisions when it counted.

Role & Duration

Product Manager

Research, Product Strategy, Facilitation, Prototyping, Backlog Prioritization & Roadmap Ownership

Team of 1 PM, 1 UX Researcher, 2 Product Designers & 8+ Developers

Jan. 2017 - Dec. 2018

Behind the Scenes
Fig. 1.0 - War room set-up during the initial discovery phase of the project.
Figure 2.0 - Paper Prototyping
Figure 3.0 - Many sticky notes were harmed in the process.
What We Built

A Quora-like experience for curious high-school students.

Researching careers is daunting. We integrated a new Huddles feature that enabled students to ask questions to working professionals in the career they were researching and receive answers fast.

Work-Based Learning
Opportunities

Exposure and experience are the missing ingredients in making informed career decisions after high school. Which is why we built a suite of tools to connect employers with students through the medium that works best, real-world experience.

Administrative Portals for Seamless Program Management

To make sure students got their questions answered and were able to request the opportunities listed required enlisting the help of local community partners and employers.

Outcome

Learnings

Closing the gap between school and world of work is a problem that's far from being solved. My hope is that with these work-based learning suite of tools we've moved one step closer.

Additionally, anytime external stakeholders (ex. community partners, employers) are involved who have never been exposed to Agile software development it's imperative to help them understand why trade-offs need to be made.

Lastly, prioritizing features and mediating between designers and developers as to the scope of said features is never easy, but provided an extremely importantly lens in balanced decision-making.

Results

Module successfully deployed on schedule to clients.

Program rolled out to two large state-wide customers in Michigan and Wisconsin.

Up Next

Roadmunk

As the start-ups first full-time design hire, I was responsible for a UX overhaul of the app's most critical workflows and building a design team from scratch.

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