Thrutext Navigation & dashboard REdesign

I was brought on by the GetThru team to help with a redesign of the administrator portal of their peer-to-peer texting app, ThruText. At the time, they were a very small company and no design team. Up until that point, the app was 100% designed and created by developers.


My goal was to give administrators of the app better ways to navigate and manage their texting campaigns.

Role: Lead Product Designer (Contractor)

Dates: Winter 2019/2020

Product goals

We needed to ease the load on support tickets and sales trainings by creating better user flows for both onboarding and existing customers. This would be achieved by consolidating navigation into a sidebar and creating a dashboard with easy access to important links and data.

We also wanted to create a consistent brand feel for the administrator portal along with creating better options for navigation with a persistent side navigation.

Our Users

Digital outreach managers for political campaigns and advocacy groups

Fundraising consultant for political campaigns and advocacy groups

Annual giving director for colleges, universities, private schools
or non-profits.

Within the ThruText app, these users are labeled as “administrators” and create and manage campaigns, groups of contacts and the users that send text messages.

About our users needs

The process

Research & Discovery




High-fidelity Mockup & Prototype

Research & Discovery

Since the platform was new to me, I had to take time to learn about the app and how it functions. I was introduced to the application and quickly learned of obvious pain points and issues along with what things were working.

I came out of the discovery with several goals:
• Apply branding to the admin portal that is consistent to the existing branding on the messenger side of ThruText.
• Redesign the navigation to help make important items more visible that are currently missing in top-level navigation.
• Give admins a dashboard where they can access all their important links. There wasn’t a natural homepage for admins to see everything they needed in one place.


I jumped right into wireframes with the task of designing a dashboard that could function as the launch pad for all the things an administrator would need. This included adding the side navigation and rethinking what lives in the top navigation.

We landed on keeping the top navigation more focused on profile and high-level links to pages like the Messenger or Admin portal. The side navigation and dashboard were focused on the links needed to build and manage a ThruText campaign.

Design & revisions

Throughout this journey, I was researching and trying to learn from what other apps and businesses do for a side navigation. Companies like Slack and Asana both have really great and functional side navigations, and I wanted to pull some of the features I felt were useful for our situation.

My biggest learning as I pushed the wireframes closer to a high-fidelity design was that my initial side nav was too wide. Since everything expanded vertically in an accordion style, there was no need to have the navigation be so large. I shrunk it down, and it freed up lots of real estate on the rest of the screen!


Since my background is in graphic design, I still have a soft spot for branding. This app was originally build mostly with bootstrap-like styling and used a generic gray palette with almost no other colors or brand identity. So as we were working towards high-fidelity designs, we also got to rethink the color palette and add some complementary colors to bring the app to life.

After the launch of this dashboard, we’ve pushed the branding even more and created a working design system with a unique color palette, icons and overall look and feel.

High-fidelity Mockups & Prototype

After lots of finessing, we finally got to a point where the new dashboard and side navigation felt ready to be implemented. We worked closely with our front end developers to recreate the new dashboard design for the world to use.


ThruText has a wonderful group of power user administrators, who are always happy to share things they'd like to see improved.

The biggest piece of feedback we received on the new dashboard was that customers missed seeing a list of their active campaigns. Before the dashboard, the "home" page for admins was a large table showing all of their campaigns.

We realized with the new dashboard that a customer would set up a campaign using the links in these three buckets (campaigns, groups, and users), but after that, they only need to return to the active campaign to manage their volunteers and the messages their sending. Currently, to get to active campaigns, it requires two clicks in the side navigation, which is not ideal for these power users!

We're currently working on a version two for this dashboard that de-prioritizes the large buckets, and increases visibility into active campaigns and message sender metrics.

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