AWS Training and Certification Portal

Client / Duration

Seattle, Washington
Apr 2018 - Present

My Role

UX Designer
Team :
UX Manager, 3 UX Designers, 1 UX Researcher, 1 Design Technologist


Full stack design
Project management
UI copy


1. 2 Feature launches in production so far
2. Cross-functional collaboration - development team, product managers and business stakeholders for critique and implementation
3. Contribute to design system on need basis

Design renovation at AWS T&C

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It was April 2018, when I joined the team in the middle of the complete renovation project of the platform.

The platform was being used by thousands of customers around the globe to access aws training and certifications. The in-person classroom trainings delivered by AWS and our training partners were driving a lot of traffic to the platform. While the platform was successful from a business perspective, it didn't fair well in user experience. We were losing customers to our competitors like and Linux Academy — it was time for our team to make the platform user-friendly. So, the newly formed UX team was tasked to redesign the entire platform. At the same time, the developers wanted to move to the modern front-end framework - React, from the legacy framework - Knockout.js and this project was an opportunity to overhaul the code and UI.


There were no back-end engineers available to work on this project. Hence our constraint was to rethink the platform, without needing any new or changes to existing backend - databases or APIs.

In classic design question, we aimed to accomplish the following -

1. Keeping the above constraint in mind, make training accessible to our customers within 2 clicks and improve the overall user experience of the platfrom...

2. Develop and execute a new Design System, which aligned with our ux and vx tenets...

The team worked on this project together, but below I have represented pieces that I delivered specifically.

#1 Account section

Launched in Dec 2018
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1.1 Information Architecture

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Since I joined the team in the middle of the project, the requirements were gathered for the account section by my teammate Lee, and I was tasked to deliver the redesign, taking them into account. The following primary requirements were identified:

1. Simplify the sub-navigation in the old design into the "My Account" dropdown in the new navigation header.

2. Introduce a new sub section - "Subscriptions", to address the digital subscription product being launched.

3. Redesign the visual of the page to comply with the new design system.

I created a simple IA diagram to help inform the redesign and get feedback from the team.

1.2 Prototypes

1.2.1 Profile Page
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1.2.2 Transcript Page
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I reviewed several design alternatives for the responsive table with the design team. Some of the considerations were -

1. The transcript page and the billing history page could have hundreds of rows for customers who have taken a lot of content and classes. The challenge was to accomodate this information without consuming too much real estate. Pagination was included in the design as well but was descoped by the dev team due to technical constraints. Hence some of the alternate designs (cards) were discarded for this particular usecase.

2. The component needed to be re-usable across both pages - transcript and billing history.

3. Each row had additional information and actions that the user could take. This requirement coupled with #1 gave birth to the collapsible row design.

4. The card design for mobile screen was developed with the help and feedback from the development team.

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1.2.3 Billing History Page
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1.2.4 Subscriptions Page
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Launched in Apr 2019
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2.1 Problem Framing

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As this project began, I reflected on what we knew about the current Certification experience. There were things that could not be changed - we still had no back-end engineers and certifications would continue to be delivered by Certmetrics, a platform external to ours. Our platform was used by our customers only to SSO (Single Sign On) to Certmetrics. Still, I wanted to solve a real problem for our customers and give them a better experience while accomodating the constraints we had. I started by diving into customer feedback we had collected over the last couple of years on the certification experience and filtered issues that were low hanging fruits but had high impact on ux.

I decided to focus the redesign on the following issues -

1. Confusion

Users did not understand why they were having to create another account for Certification when they already had an account with AWS training and certification platform. It was not obvious to the user that they are creating an account with Certmetrics. The UI needed to orient them better.

2. Too many clicks

3. Ineffective UI Copy

There were redundancies in the copy on the page. The copy was flat, unnecessary in places, and did not provide information that would help guide the user. It also lacked a friendly tone.

4. Low visual impact

The pages really needed a visual upgrade. The Certifications experience is critical to the platform; it drives a lot of traffic to the platform, and well, it needed to have a good impression on our customers. Plus, it needed to be aligned with our new design system.

2.2 Current CX Flows and Scenarios

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2.3 Sketches

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I created 2 concepts and reviewed them with the design team, technical product manager, product managers and stakeholders to understand technical feasibility and get the concepts signed off.

I also developed user flows for the two concepts, comparing the number of clicks it would take for the user to get to Certmetrics. After careful review and feedback from the stakeholders, I decided to go ahead with concept #1.

I then coordinated the effort to change and improve the UI copy for the 3 pages involved in the Certification flow. The final copy was developed with the help of the AWS marketting team. The final copy was then translated into 5 languages for localization.

I then reviewed the high fidelity prototypes with the Director of the T&C organization and got her sign off. The presentation used in this review can be found here.

2.4 User flow and click analysis

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2.5 Final Prototypes

2.5.1 When user is not signed into
2.5.2 When user is authenticated into + has an existing Certmetrics account
2.5.3 When user is authenticated into + does not have an existing Certmetrics account

Content & Design © 2019. Urvashi Gupta