Skip to main content

Real-time crisis alerts. Samdesk

Samdesk is an AI-powered global disruption monitoring tool delivering critical alerts and situational awareness to help you respond to critical events with speed and confidence.

Samdesk Map

Product Pivot

During my time at Samdesk, the core product underwent a pivot from a platform for journalists and broadcasters to include social media in their content to a powerful crisis monitoring and alerting platform powered by machine learning and AI to scan billions of data points to deliver critical alerts and situational awareness to help the user respond to emergencies with speed and confidence.


One of the challenges we needed to overcome is how to transition from a user-powered experience to a mostly automated experience while giving the user the ability to set this up in a way that provides them with the data most relevant to them.


When we set out to create a solution for our users, we must first talk to them. We knew that creating a crisis monitoring platform was going to involve having a lot of conversations with experts in order to properly understand what it is we are building and more importantly why we are building it.

Design Strategy
User Research
Experience Design
Visual Design

We conducted user research, interviewed experts in the field of security and social media as well as existing media partners to identify the gaps in public’s overall situational awareness on critical events happening around them.

Following that, we began conducting market research to further validate our findings that we have discovered up to this point. The final consensus being that we now know what the market needs.

Armed with the knowledge and understanding that we can deliver critical alerts and situational awareness to our users almost instantly – we started to roadmap our approach and identify what this means for the current manual nature of the platform and plan the transition from a primarily user-input experience to one of automation powered by machine learning and AI.

Collaborating with experts in their respective fields helped us to plan a roadmap for the solution that best fills the gaps in situational awareness using the power of social media.

Now that we as a team understand what we are building, I began creating a design strategy with strong considerations made specifically on how the user experience will transition from a user-powered perspective to one that is largely automated by machine learning and AI.

Many design iterations were created all throughout the process and we demoed these iterations with our users and experts in the field. A specific case for this being the notifications sent within the app itself and how those would be seen across the platform.

Samdesk Map Alert
Gallery of photos and videos associated to this event
Event type tag. Colour coded for ease of recognition
Simple graph visual to indicate the event trending state
Indicator to show the level of severity
Map alert dot. Colour coded to match the event type

The final product is the culmination of all the market research, understanding the user needs, and planning a structured design roadmap to deliver the best solution possible.

This resulted in a product that is a powerful, thoughtful, well designed, and above all – built to fill a critical gap in crisis monitoring and giving the public the situational awareness that was lacking.

The result is bold and essential

The final design is a culmination of our collaboration with internal teams and our users to assess and optimize for the best user experience. The core foundation of this project was to create a clean and simple experience that is accessible, efficient, and consistent.

Our goal from the start is to maintain the powerful simplicity in the tools of the previous version of the app by bringing them forward into the new product, post-pivot. By doing this, we were able to preserve the familiarity of the platform despite the new version being a substantial overhaul of the experience and set of tools.

View More

Success measured

With a product delivered to our users, the work on iterating and adapting to their needs can begin. For this we pay careful attention to certain user analytics.

  • Heat maps of user activity throughout the app
  • Behaviour mapping for troubleshooting
  • User retention and engagement over time
  • Measuring how long it takes to complete certain tasks
  • Checking in with users to gauge their overall satisfaction

The Results

“Access to a source of global information, around the clock, act first and act fast!”

Today, the Samdesk platform stands stronger and better than ever as a beacon for security and first response.

I collaborated with the team to create an experience with a map first focus and an alerts feed that could be setup by the user to monitor relevant data points. This allows users to setup monitoring tabs based on specified criteria and let the platform do the rest.







Take a closer look at Samdesk