Case study: NGGroup Property and Auctioneering company

NGGroup website

NG GROUP is a Company that focuses on Property Sales, Multiple-Property Auctions and Onsite Auctions, as well as Training & Development of Estate Agents and Auctioneers.

Ethnographic research and Iterative design help us understand the end-user needs.

The brief: Help NGGroup showcase its two divisions, Property and Auctioneering whilst
providing relevant info for users.


– Provided target users with Property and Auctineering information
– Create an attractive usable website that allowed them to quickly update site info without know too much
about the underlying system.

Project team consisted of the amazing Milton Madanda and myself.

Project timeline: 3 months

  • We did research with user groups, the system administrator and stakeholders followed by iterative design and prototyping which I was responsible for.
  • We conducted Ethnographic studies and Contextual Interviews with the stakeholders to understand how they conduct their daily work and tasks at their company offices.
  • We also observed their auctions as well to get better context on the Auctioneering side of the business.

The research revealed 

– Auctioneering info is very time sentive and would require a easy way to add and update on the site.
– There are several stages to the sale of property and users would require concise, accurate information.
– The overall site would have to simple enough to update, information easy to find and graphical appealing.

We went on to conduct further workshops and interviews to gather range of ideas and aspirations for the new website.

Development fell into several steps
– 3 Initial visual design mock-ups based on contextual interviews and tasks observed. Using rapid development we got early user feedback on drafts. This was my responsibility.

Visual mockups initial drafts

– Iteratively creating prototypes with NGGroup
– User testing with matching target profile to find problems
– Refined the architecture based on the findings of the usability tests

Milton was responsible for the technology selection, plugins creation and back-end system creation.

We created a website that allowed NGGroup to 
– Showcase their Property, Auction and Training divisions
– Showcase current Auctions
– Allow users to put forward request for a property
– Allow users to apply for a Learnship and Mentoring programme
– Allow users to submit CVs for job opportunities
– Allow users to search for property
– Elicit General feedback and comments from users

Lessons learnt:

First hand observation of what activities the auctioneers did, was critical to creating a real world experience for users. There are things users do not mention but can be observed that are fundamental to task completion.

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