Krop recently launched a new service called Creative Database. Creative Database takes web site usability to the next level by offering designers a way to build a modern resume as well as an online portfolio.
Initially I thought “Holy biscuits! Not another resume website! …” For Krop, this move made perfect sense as they already have a popular job board for creative professionals like myself. So while allowing users to search for jobs, why not allow companies to search for people using their online resumes and creative portfolios? Nice and a smart move for Krop.
Great design & usability Krop!
I am not writing this post to announce a new service from Krop. Instead, I am writing about the usability and ease-of-use for the new service. The trend “if I can call it so” started a good while ago when Coroflot launched a similar service.
From the start I was really impressed about Creative Database’s form usability, meaning the initial stages of the sign-up form. Clean, simple, and different from similar services, Krop only asks you to fill in the very minimum of information they need in order to create your account.
Krop’s user-friendly signup forms
Then I started to upload some images for my portfolio since that was the most relevant part for me as a designer. Also worth mentioning is that I found the administration interface design of the gallery so simple that a 5 year-old kid could do it. Plain, simple, and functional.
I successfully built my gallery in about a minute, which is a record when it comes to building an online portfolio. I didn’t even have to prepare the pictures in a previous stage. Instead, I just picked them from my work folder.
Images uploaded while I continued to add new images, so when I was done uploading a few pictures, I wasn’t forced to wait for the uploads to complete. The pictures were already uploaded and I was ready to move to the next step.
If you choose to fill in your resume along with your portfolio, you’ll be guided through the same simple process with only a few steps. Please note that all forms/pieces are presented in such a way that even if Krop asks you the very same information to build your resume, you can still have it simple and clean and you are not required to fill in long and boring forms.
Awesome user interface design Krop
Since Creative Database is a free service, you can’t tweak the interface design and you are limited to 10 images for your portfolio. But if you choose to upgrade your service to the PRO subscription, you will be able to upload unlimited sets and images, map your domain, RSS, and choose between four default styles at this point.
Well, I can say more than congratulations Krop – awesome work! I really hope to see more similar services coming. And I am not referring to portfolio services, but clean websites with easy-to-use interfaces and good user-centered interface design.
Focus on your users
In a digital era when there are so many online services and web apps coming online every day, it would be essential to always pay attention to the people that will use your service. Make your service clear. Design it sleek and most importantly, pay attention to not waste my time as a user of your service. Try to anticipate and avoid any situation that can or will at any point confuse me. And more importantly, try not to get me lost somewhere in the process. Simplify.
It’s really disappointing to see in 2009, companies that launch web based applications still consider they are doing you a favor. Think twice before you launch your interface design to the world. As a user, I am doing you a favor by picking your product instead of your competitor’s product. They may have a better user interface design. Or maybe your competition has practiced usability standards. Make your products work for your users and you’ll be astonished by the results it will deliver to your business.
Ready to see my Krop portfolio?
You can view my Krop portfolio at http://krop.com/bistrian/. Tell me what you think. I am keen to hear your comments as well as what you do consider as being good interface design.