Second Servings

Client Project
9 Months
Sep 2020 - May 2021
Adobe Illustrator
Design Lead
User Research
Information Architecture
User Journey Map
Interface Design
2 Product Managers
2 Development Leads
4 Developers
MVP launched


Second Servings, one of the largest food rescue organizations in Houston, collects and re-distributes food to people in need. The communication during the food redistribution process is very time-consuming and repetitive. Second Servings approached my team for food redistribution process simplification.

This project was created from scratch. The MVP was released in May 2021.


How to simplify the repetitive communication during the food redistribution process?



Understanding the current process from the perspective of Second Servings and Recipients.
1. What is current communication process like for both sides?

2. What do people love about the current process?

3. Which part causes most pain / can be optimized?
To better understand the challenges in the current communication process, we had conversations with the Second Serving logistic specialist, Max Curry, and 3 recipient organizations of different scale, frequency of contact with SS. We asked about the current process, their working context, and what they loved and felt bothered about.


How can we eliminate Second Serving's need to have to call 92+ recipient charities during the food redistribution process?


Generate design insights from the research.
Map out user flow and build information architecture.
Create wireframe and design hi-fi prototype for hand-off.

A mobile APP

  • Most of the time target users are outside or on the move, need portable platform
  • Target users are not technologically sophisticated, but uses phone very often

UI catered for recipients, Second Servings as an admin

  • Recipients have more agency in choosing food types and quantity suitable for each organizations

A consolidated food market place

  • Show food pictures, delivery window, expiration date, suggested uses of food
  • Aid recipients’s food prep & distribute process

A request management for both

  • Second Servings can answer requests from recipients, recipients track food status live updates
  • Donation status tracking and food stock management
  • Narrow down SS route time-wise and geographically


A two-side mobile APP with a food market, food request management, and recipient management.
Recipient | FOOD MARKET
Request food with a few clicks.
With the food marketplace, recipient charities can browse food and request it within seconds. Recipients now have more agency in food choice based on food quantity and delivery. The description offers prep guidance on rare food items.
Live update of delivery.
The request pages are arranged according to the request sequence: pending,  scheduled, in transit, and delivered. The green status text on the top right help user differentiate different request cards without looking at the tabs.
Second servings | FOOD MARKET
Food stock management.
Customized food listing.
One post saves 90+calls per item added. Quicker access to the food stock data, and requests status under each food item. Edit individual food info after posted, and live update for all recipients.
Second servings | request management
Quick actions, easy planning.
Second Servings can perform different actions on requests of different status. The accepted requests are ordered by delivery date and recipient address to optimize delivery route.
Browse and manage the recipients list with one click.
SS admin has an additional function: a roster of all listing recipient charities and people registered under each organization.
I consulted with Second Servings marketing specialist, Kristen, and developed the APP visual system based on Second Servings branding and existing logo. I also researched and implemented material design guidelines and Apple design guidelines in the design.
Go back to process review


Test the MVP with extreme users.
user feedback
We selected users based on their expertise or amateurism on the subject of research. Therefore, the data collected spreads over a wider spectrum than otherwise.

First, a considerable number of target users are aged people with low tech backgrounds, so we tested with senior users who are not familiar with operating mobile APPs.

Second, although many recipient organizations have only one office in Houston, we want to test the usability of our APP with organizations that manage multiple offices.

Lastly, we tested with users who spend more time outside of the office and those who spend most time in front of the desktop to see the overall workflow efficiency.

Key testing feedbacks:

1. Category tags would be useful for assigning food
2. Fit Second Servings branding guidelines very well
3. Overall flow is very easy to understand and use

If we were to have more time work on this project, I would incorporate the following designs to improve the user experience of the product.
1. Integrate the Max’s calender to the APP, and suggest delivery window based on Max’s availability

2. Add notification of food that are expiring soon; push these to the top for recipients’ market list

3. Incorporate touch-free pick-up options

4. Drop-off option and pickup route AI optimization, based on food quantity and distance


I've improved myself in 3 aspects: crticial thinking, communicate with developers and work with priority.
Second Servings APP is the first product design project I have. I’ve grown so much from the process, and picked up many softwares and design thinking throughout the way. The project went through three major design iterations as I always found places for improvement during my monthly self evaluation. Below are my 3 main takeaways from this project.
Active listening, critical thinking
The target users are very different from the people I am exposed to in my everyday life. I learned to actively listen to people’s needs and extract the underlying pain points and generate design insights. I learned to take all the user input critically and have no personal bias for any design to analyze the advantages and disadvantages of every design and choose the best one that fits the given context. 
Design Standardization
& Work with developers
Via closely working with developers, I learned to think from a developer’s perspective. Designing similar and reusable components throughout the product eco-system not only provide better user experience via consistency, but also saves a lot of development time. 
Work with priority
We have limited time and labor yet too many design ideas. I learned that it's better to launch an MVP with functions that solve user's most severe pain-points rather than creating a perfect product that never shipped. It is very key to analyze the user research and work with clients and map out the priority hierarchy as a guide for the design and development process.
01. Problem02. Process03. Research04. Define Probelm05. Design06. Final Solution07. Evaluate08. Takeaways