MyHEAT

Helping millions visualize home heat loss for improved comfort, savings, and energy efficiency.

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An invisible problem

Existing energy efficiency solutions do not motivate homeowners to make improvements. As a homeowner, it is difficult to fix a problem you cannot see. How do I know if my home is energy efficient, not the devices inside of it?

A visual solution

Use aerial Heat Loss Maps and Ratings to help homeowners visualize where energy is escaping from their homes. Then, connect them with service providers for improving home comfort and increasing energy savings.

Responsive Mockup of MyHEAT

Engage, educate, and connect

By engaging homeowners with their home’s heat loss, an opportunity is created to educate them about improving home comfort and increasing energy savings, which can ultimately help with achieving better energy efficiency. Research shows that homeowners are 5x more likely to make improvements after seeing a heat loss map of their home. And by connecting them with local service providers and incentive programs, homeowners can feel empowered and supported.

Process and involvement

Packaging unique Heat Loss Maps and Ratings for individual homes into a responsive web app ensured ease-of-access for the user, regardless of their platform choice. As a Product Design Lead and MyHEAT’s first employee, it was my responsibility to oversee the entire product lifecycle—from initial branding to UI design to full stack development—using an agile process. This included continuous and iterative refinement of the core product through creation of wireframes, high fidelity mockups, and rapid prototypes. I also worked endlessly on code and asset optimization for delivering a fast and unified experience across all browsers and platforms.

Research

  • User testing
  • A/B testing
  • User interviews
  • Web analytics

Design

  • Brand & Identity
  • Wireframes
  • Mockups
  • Prototypes

Development

  • Front-end
  • Back-end
  • Cloud infrastructure
  • Data storage
Process of MyHEAT
Process of MyHEAT

Results

During my tenure, MyHEAT’s responsive web app shipped with heat loss information for over 1.2 million homes across 18 Canadian cities, with growing interest from US. The three main objectives to engage, educate, and connect homeowners were supported by an actively engaged audience, increased social media sharing and viral activity, and a high conversion ratio for the utility partners.

Actively engaged audience

Increased social media sharing

High conversion ratio for industry

MyHEAT was also featured by Google, Global News, and was nominated for Canadian Innovation Awards by Techvibes earlier this year.

Additional products

I also led the design and development for two additional products besides the core responsive web app. I developed a RESTful API for utilities to integrate MyHEAT’s home-specific heat loss data within their online customer portals. Furthermore, I also built a web-based internal quality check and assurance tool to help improve MyHEAT’s data processing pipeline.

Challenges

Several challenges—from privacy to data complexity—were encountered during the product lifecycle. Although significant improvements were delivered over time, some of these challenges will need to be constantly refined.

Privacy. The idea of publicly showing heat loss information for all homes in a city can raise privacy concerns. A simple, no-questions-asked policy was put in place to remove homes for users that requested it. But due to the power of MyHEAT’s visual solution, requests to add homes outweighed the requests to remove homes.

Sponsorship. As more utility partnerships were formed, the “voice” needed to stay consistent throughout the entire product. This was accomplished by reviewing the sponsored energy efficiency content from utility partners to ensure consistency in the user experience. It also helped with avoiding sponsored content to look like a plain advertisement.

Demographics. Homeowners vary across multiple age groups—from 25-34 to 65+. Creating a universally intuitive and easy-to-understand responsive web app across all-regions of Canada was very challenging. The perception of energy efficiency may varied from city to city so changes in tone and language had to be considered.

Data complexity. Heat Loss Maps are typically complex and require a thermal expert’s interpretation. This was tackled by guiding users about their home’s heat loss through the use of summary cards. Because these data are also large, their size had to be optimized to minimize the impact of the web app’s performance on mobile.

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