Last week, we co-hosted our first in-house Designathon with technology VC firm Andreessen-Horowitz. Design students and interns from across the Bay Area gathered to tackle a unique design challenge: to design Asana as a platform across the web. The students were joined by Asana’s in-house designers who were on hand to offer ideas, mentorship, and guidance.
The premise behind the prompt was this: the more ubiquitous Asana can become on the web, the more beneficial it will be to teams. We wanted to see what it would look like if Asana were integrated across the web not unlike Facebook, which is a core of our social experience and a platform that includes photo-sharing, fitness, and social games.
Challenge participants were given a two hour time block to work on a design or interpretation of their response. Students worked in teams of 3-5 people and presented their designs at the end of the night. We were impressed by a number of interesting integrations, ranging from geo-located tasks and workspaces to Asana running on various applications across desktop, web, and mobile. Our own design team was blown away by the number and quality of ideas; when the time came to select a winner, the deliberation period became quite heated!
“One of the simplest pleasures as a designer is getting fresh, outside eyes on the problems you’ve been thinking about for years. Every aspect of the Designathon, from merely explaining what Asana is trying to get at to seeing the students’ solutions, delivered that in spades.” — Andrew Watterson, Asana designer
Our team was inspired by the attendees’ fresh perspective on Asana. And though the choice was hard, the panel of judges ultimately decided to crown Team Heist (named after a meeting room here in our office) the winner of the design challenge. The team designed an integration with Dropbox and Gmail that would streamline the collaborative workflow among project managers, designers, and developers. The proposed integration combined task management and notifications — specifically for communication around design changes — as well as the ability to comment on Dropbox files from email or Asana. If that sounds complex, check out the slides from their presentation below to better understand their process!
The winning presentation
At Asana, we focus on marrying design with everything we do. Learn more about design at by browsing our design archives and watch co-founder Justin Rosenstein discuss the importance of design at Asana with Bloomberg TV.
We’d love to hear: what is the number one integration you’d like to see?
Discover apps that integrate with Asana by visiting our apps page.
Check out a few photos from the event, below.