December 2018 design sprint


Hai Yang, Aditi Khazanchi

A performance review platform making the process of managing and organizing performance reviews more human and efficient for admins

How can 2 admins easily manage 90+ employees?

Performance reviews are a valuable part of human resource development. At Instrument through performance reviews, each employee is empowered to learn, grow and create a path forward. Admins are the hero’s of this system – they hold it together and provide support all throughout the review cycle.

Currently, the admin team includes just 2 people. Facilitating and setting up reviews for at least 90 employees each review season can be overwhelming.

Admins’ core tasks

Organize reviews

Organize heavy qualitative data on each employee

Provide support

Answer questions for 90 employees and leadership during a review season

Monitor progress

Make sure everyone completes their reviews on time and the overall process goes smoothly

Assign tasks & schedule meetings

Notify leaders and employees when a review is due and when they will be meeting

Current solution

Instrument currently uses google drive and sheets to track performance which is an inflexible, time consuming system that requires a lot of manual input.

Design sprint explorations


Admin’s dashboard

Progress screen

The application is divided into three main areas – a home dashboard for updates, forms for creating and sending review forms, progress to track completion of forms by employees, and schedule to schedule review meetings.

Helpful contextual tips

to help the user make a smooth transition into using a new system for managing performance reviews.

Batch sorting for convenience and speed

Send all completed reviews to leadership through one-click using Batch sorting


Overseeing and monitoring individual progress

Individual detail view

On the individual employee’s page, admins receive an overview of the employees review cycle. They can notate and quality check all documents. Admins can mark the documents as reviewed and ready to send to leadership through the ‘forms reviewed’ button.


Using Slack integrations and a helpful chatbot

Individual detail view

In order to reduce manual input and workload so admins can focus on what’s important, we designed an intuitive bot – Chi, with a personality crafted keeping the company values in mind. 


Automated reminders

Chi sends automated reminders to the employee if their self-assessment has not been completed


Quick answers to FAQ

Chi also offers to help answer any quick questions the employee might have about the review process.

Escalate to admin when needed

If Chi is unable to answer more complex questions, it provides the employee with other options – such as asking the admin or the channel. This helps the admin focus on major tasks and respond to complex questions while Chi takes care of the rest. 

Slack integration for admins

Admin uses their slack integration bar to reply to any employee questions they receive. They also get a daily summary of questions they have received from employees

Slackbot assistance

Chi, also sends the admin productivity tips to help make their workflow more efficient when using this new performance review platform.

Final takeways

During this 7 day sprint, we learned how to rapidly test concepts and approach problems in a multi faceted way. We identified paint points the admins have and explored multiple touch points for solving those problems. We knew it would not be possible to create the whole system in the timeframe, but our goal was to start a dialog with our solutions through rapid ideation.  The sprint helped us refine our workflow as co designers and pushed us to think as end to end product owners. Jake Knapp’s How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days kept us honest along the way! 


Thank You