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A solution to inefficient document storage.

REDoc is a startup cloud based multi-document storage system for real estate businesses to streamline document management that involve various parties.

My Experience

4 weeks

I was part of a driven 5-person team that was tasked to design a minimal viable product in place of a business idea. This was the largest design team I have been on. I incorporated different working styles into my process and learned how to lead a research sprint and facilitate client meetings. As a team, we researched competitors, the domain, and users in real estate. REDoc was the most challenging project I have worked on because of the domain. There is so much that needed to be retained to understand commercial real estate that I never stopped learning. Following research were able to define the problem, ideate on it, and wireframe a cloud based document storage system. Having to connect standardization to a field where firms rely so heavily on their own individual processes was intense but gratifying. I was surprised with how much I learned throughout the 4 weeks. Read more about my process with REDoc!


UX Research (Lead)

UX Design

Information Architecture

Time Frame

Tools Used





With the current state of technology in the workforce, commercial real estate businesses have unfortunately not taken full advantage of implementing technological advances to their workflows. Commercial Real Estate (CRE) businesses have historically operated through inefficient processes to communicate and share key information pertaining to real estate property, especially documents. Various parties, including owners, property managers, asset managers, tenants, and vendors, need to be included in document transactions which can affect business operations at any given time. Keeping track of and communicating document activity is a tedious process because of the amount of alignment it requires from multiple users.

Client Goals for REDoc

  • A single platform that enables the property managers to manage, track, and share pertinent communication, such as leases, permits, and building services

  • Third Party integration with document processes

  • Provide a centralized hub to increase efficiency for document interactions

  • Streamline operations in a comprehensive way that increases automation and reduces manual processes

The Challenge

Our goal divided into two parts:​

Validate or reject the information behind the purpose of REDoc’s current product.

Introduce design recommendations to meet the users needs based on what is discovered through the research.

REDoc Demo Observations

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  • Information architecture is confusing. Files seem to not follow an organizational structure

  • Inability to see stakeholders in platform; if a goal is to streamline document activity for various users, then the parties need to be listed within the system to minimize user workflows

  • Application goals appear to cater to target a specific area of the building like tenant operations, such as lease agreements and janitorial operations, less to various building files, like permits, blueprints, and financial documents


Having no previous background in commercial real estate, the team needed to familiarize themselves with the domain by conducting qualitative research to get the most accurate knowledge of the industry. Our objectives in conducting research included:

  • Efficiency of current storage document products in Commercial Real Estate

  • Interactions between users and document workflows

  • Document tracking processes

  • The users involvement in certain document processes

Domain Research

Research goals included understanding  the current market landscape, industry trends, and to familiarize ourselves direct and indirect competitors to REDoc. First, we analyzed the CRE business’ relationship with technology adoption in everyday processes.

Key Takeaway

Spreadsheets and papers still taking a large role in property management

It seems there is a large opportunity to incorporate more recent technology for business activity. Only a small chunk of property managers are adopting new technology and even less than 5% of property owners are adopting it. To what extent are spreadsheets and paper fulfilling property management tasks?





Of Real Estate organizations use spreadsheets or paper in some critical business capacity

Of Real Estate organizations use paper-based processes to manage properties

Of property managers identify as property professionals who are ahead when it comes to adopting technology

Of owners & asset managers identify as property professionals who are ahead when it comes to adopting and deploying technology

On a Company Level

On an Individual Level

User Research

Now that we had an idea of the industry, we needed to dig deeper on who the user is, their work behavior, and the products they were using. The two subject matter experts interviewed were a Director of Property management and a Senior Procurement Executive. Along with our SMEs, we interviewed four users in CRE- a portfolio manager, an operations manager, commercial building management, and a senior associate.

  • Any patterns revolving around document processes (how frequent, what is frequently communicated, etc.)

  • Amount of 3rd party integration involved in property management

Our User Research Goals:

  • Current user document workflows and how that success is measured.

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Key Insights

Various Workflows Waste Time

Because of non- standardization in document processes, there were inconsistencies between stakeholders resulting in implicated current and future workflows.

Emails Are Temporary Solutions

The amount that stakeholders relied on email use to facilitate document workflows. Emails served a crucial role during job functions, resulting in hundreds of emails a day and individual digital trails.

“Every company stores things differently & it is completely driven by the individual. When a person leaves, there’s a chance that they may have saved some docs in their email.”

- Property Management Director

“If you need a signature from someone who gets 100 emails a day...where does your contract signature fall within those 600 emails?”

- Property Manager

Defining the Problem

Synthesizing the research, we learned that the current workflow of document processes taking place in real estate companies varied by the individuals. Dated methods of document tracking, like paper-based or spreadsheet activity, was still used to communicate these processes. Time, and subsequently, money is wasted for individuals keeping track of related documents.


With that, professionals in the industry expressed the lack of standardization affected, not only their own company, but other companies as well. One of the biggest issues alongside standardization, was the acquisition or disposition of properties.  Certain information and documents pertaining to a building would be lost during these transactions because of insufficient document processes. Owners and property managers can spend months in releasing or obtaining documents to/from other companies.

Problem Statement

“The overloaded property manager needs to systemize document processes

in a centralized platform because it would regulate communication from various parties to optimize workflows in order to allow for more time

to facilitate other building obligations.”

Design Principles



Integrated Communication


Updated, Dependable, & Sustainable

Document Tracking

Visibility, Accessibility, & Efficiency

We performed a brainstorming activity, Mash-up method, and came up with 10 different ideas to solve for

our users’ problem:

Concepts That Stood Out:

We tested these concepts with 4 CRE employees. We narrowed down the 10 concepts to these 4 that received the best feedback:

Now that we defined the who and what of the problem, it put us in a good position to sketch

out some concepts. We honed in on the most important areas that would alleviate the issues our

users were facing:

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Standardized Document Storage

“Every company stores things differently & it is completely driven by the individual. When a person leaves, there’s a chance they may have saved documents in their email.”

Users expressed how many documents they save everyday. We were able to interpret their mental models of how they structure

document organization.


Link to Prototype

Future Recommendations

We believe that integrating a customized notification system so users are aware of when to be alerted, it would be help user engagement. More research would be required to establish notification methods while on and off the platform.

We implemented valuable information we learned from our users in the concept testing and moved features on to wireframe:

Document Versions

Version tracking for each document in a single platform reduces time and effort to locate past files.

The final prototype tested well with users in the last round of usability testing. There were a few insights that we gained that could be implemented, but due to the time constraints, we provided them as recommendations:

Integrate with Outlook (Existing Email/Messenger Systems)

Permission Control

We would need more research to establish how other parties are able to view and retain documents that are owned by another party. As well as research how that process for other parties proceeds; how members are displayed on the platform.

Calendar View

Our team considered incorporating a calendar as a home page for users to conveniently be aware of future REDoc activity. We did not test this as we were coming close to the deadline, but can see this as a viable feature in the future product.


In 4 weeks (3 Sprints), our team was able to identify patterns in the industry, pin the problem, and provide a viable solution. We followed a research-driven design process that led us to design a solution, helping property managers and secondary users to oversee building documents in standardized commercial real estate storage platform. If you would like to discuss the project, send me an email to set something up.


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