Design For Good feat. Eden Sinclair

Introducing Eden Sinclair, UX Designer & Research Lead at the RSPCA! Eden ensures intuitive digital experiences for animal lovers, crafting impactful solutions that inspire action and promote animal welfare. Eden’s dedication shines through, leveraging the support of over 200 volunteers to conduct user research. ‘Designing for good’ has exposed Eden to the immense passion and drive in the charity sector, enriching design with inclusivity for all users.

The purpose of our ‘Design For Good’ content series is to shine a light on how creative innovation can be a driver for positive change. We feature those that are making it happen, those with grand potential. Businesses and individuals that are shaking up their sector and finding ways to do things better, for social or environmental good.

Can you please introduce yourself and tell us what your role is at your organisation?

My name is Eden, and I’m a UX Designer and UX Research Lead at the RSPCA. In my work life, I’m responsible for ensuring that all of our digital platforms, including websites and mobile applications, are intuitive, user-friendly, and meet all of the needs of our very diverse audience base! I work hard to create digital experiences that inspire action and promote animal welfare.

My work involves understanding user behaviours and needs through research and analysis, using wireframing and prototyping to create impactful solutions that encourage really meaningful and lasting engagement with our charity. I also spend a lot of time collaborating with teams across the RSPCA as a whole to ensure our digital platforms are not only user-friendly but also promote empathy, education, and action for creating a better world for animals.

Can you tell us a bit more about the work your organisation does, and how the UX teams support this?

The RSPCA is the world’s oldest and largest animal welfare charity, and we focus on rescuing, rehabilitating, and rehoming or releasing animals across England and Wales. We’re also campaigning around animal welfare laws, effecting change for animals in laboratories, improving farm animal welfare, educating young people and adults, and providing scientifically backed advice and information to support this.

The UX team, comprising three designers (including myself) and a UX manager, focuses on improving our digital offerings: the main RSPCA website, the RSPCA Education site, the politics site, and new and exciting projects. As a unit, we work closely with the public to ensure that our designs are user-centric and that our UX is tailored to not only encourage people to donate to support us, but also improve animal welfare themselves.

Can you share some challenges or barriers you had to overcome whilst working in a charity and ‘designing for good’?

I’d say that resource is the biggest challenge that I’ve faced. My last company was in the Technology sector, and so resource was never an issue due to very large budgets. However, working at the RSPCA, it’s imperative that we keep costs as low as possible to maximise the number of animals we can help. This is especially evident when attempting to complete user research, as usually a company would pay for research participants, but we have to rely on the generosity of the public.

Thankfully, the public are incredibly generous, and we have over 200 wonderful volunteers who help us test our designs every week. We couldn’t do it without them, and it’s heartwarming to see the commitment to animal welfare.

What has been the key thing you’ve learned about ‘designing for good’ and your target audience specifically?

I think the key thing that I’ve taken away from designing for good has been the incredible passion and drive in the charity sector, not only from the target audience, but also my colleagues at the RSPCA. It’s a fantastic and rewarding place to work.

My target audience is incredibly diverse, but they all share a common love and concern for animals. Whether they are long-time supporters of the RSPCA, or children being introduced to animal welfare for the first time, the passion for animals and kindness is clear.

One of the most rewarding things about working in the charity sector is getting to experience this first-hand. I get to work rather closely with our audience, through research, testing and interviews, and it is incredible to see how deeply people care, and how our supporters are making such a positive impact.

What’s more, the diversity in our target audience really enriches the work that we do for the RSPCA and challenges us to make our designs accessible and inclusive for all. Irrespective of physical or cognitive abilities, embracing the diverse nature of our users allows us to create a more meaningful experience for everyone.

I think the passion and commitment of our audience really drives us to continuously innovate, iterate and improve our designs. It’s amazing to work alongside and for people that are making such a tangible difference to the lives of animals.

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User Experience & Design

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Chris Nasrawi