flow-e // Product

Flow-e provides an elegant kanban-like workflow that's combined with the ideas behind inbox zero inside your Gmail and Outlook. flow-e transforms your inbox into a central todo app.

I was the sole product designer in a team of 5. My role started by recognizing users who work with email excessively, identifying their pain points in the process, and determining the fittest solutions.

Who is our ideal user?

Users who get 100+ emails a day. Someone who communicates with a high number and a wide variety of people in a single day through an email. Enthusiast of efficiency and running many parallel projects with hundreds of stakeholders that want to keep the communication Lean.

Tom hanks using flow-e to send his email

What is the problem we are trying to solve?

Email clients are productivity tools, but the way they present email is often too rigid because we currently work with email.

The truth is, today, we need a seamless way to manage emails as tasks, in addition to tracking to-dos, monitoring our time, staying organized, and balancing multiple projects and priorities at once. The existing email clients folder-and-flag system isn't complex enough to meet our rapidly changing needs.

How are we going to solve it?

A Lean email process can save your inbox.

It has the potential to keep you on the ball when it comes to incoming messages and the actionable work items that come flooding in along with them.

But why?

Flow-e was born out of our desire to apply Lean to the inbox.

As students of Lean and power users of email, we couldn't help but see the connection between the methodology we were using to run our organization and the development of our original product, Kanbanize, and the challenges we faced when it came to our inbox.

What is Lean methodology?

Lean represents creating as much value as possible without wasting any resources in the process.

The turkish butcher salt move

What design approach we took?

Dividing the inbox interface between a feed of incoming mail and a visual email workflow provides a better way to differentiate between your communication stages.

The email that makes it into the workflow will be the actionable communication only – everything else needs to be sorted out. Within the visual email workflow, actionable emails move through predefined stages but remain visible at all times. The columns that represent these stages in the workflow are customizable to suit your process.