Instructional Designer, Affirm
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Instructional Designer, Affirm
Affirm lets users take out microcredits at the point of sale with participating vendors providing a quick, transparent, and more inclusive lending alternative to credit cards.
As part of our #PiktoChat series, Sarah had a brief chat over Zoom with Theodore Paat from Affirm to discuss the importance of visual communication in learning.
Below you will find a summary of this conversation.
Teodore is an Instructional Designer and a Co-Lead of LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group at Affirm.
He is in charge of finding the right tools for his team.
The team was in need for a solution that would allow them to create visuals in a timely manner. They needed something for designing on the fly, producing a good-looking outcome ready to be showcased to a broader audience.
Theo did a lot of research for various platforms ranging from Venngage to Canva. What made him ultimately decide for Piktochart was the value for money that he was getting. Piktochart had all the features he needed, and the price was competitive compared to the other solutions out there.
Theo first signed up for the free trial. He had fun playing with the platform and quickly fell in love with Piktochart. What mattered the most was that it allowed his team to create quality results in a short amount of time.
Instructional Designers form a significant number of Piktochart users. That’s why Sarah was interesting in learning more from Theo about the importance of visual communication in his day-to-day job.
When we think of creating visual communication as an Instructional designer, we have to make sure we know how our audience learns best.Theodore Paat, Instructional Designer at Affirm
According to Theo, one of the most important things for Instructional Designers, and anyone developing content, is creating something easy to digest.
Or attention span, as adult learners, is very short. Typically, within the first 10-20 seconds, we decide whether we will proceed with reading something or scan through it.
That’s where visual communication comes into play. It helps Instructional Designers to make sure that they can quickly communicate the right information.
People often don’t have time for learning because they are so caught up in their job. Part of the job of an Instructional Designer is figuring out how people learn best. Visuals might not be for everyone (eg. auditory learners) but they allow to at least cater to the part of the audience who are visual learners.
With Piktochart, Affirm can create simple infographics that are both engaging and impactful.
Before Piktochart, Affirm was solely relying on G-Suite when creating their learning and development content. Adding Piktochart to their arsenal has helped them with engagement by creating novelty in the way training material was presented. It helped Affirm’s team to get their message across.
Being able to whip something up in an hour yields a lot of results compared to putting so much time trying to create the perfect design. Instead of wasting time on creating a perfect slide, Affirm can now communicate in a faster manner.
Theo has three visual communication tips he would like to share with other Instructional Designers.
Number one, don’t forget to explore. This could be intimidating, especially with so many different types of templates out there. But as long as you have your result in mind (infographic, poster) and how do you want it to be presented (size), you’ll get a better idea of how you want it to look like once you go through the templates.
Another one is to stay true to your branding. You want to have a consistent message and brand. According to Theo, what is unique about Piktochart is that it allows you to configure your branding as part of Piktochart’s settings. This way colors, shapes, and backgrounds from your existing branding can be easily uploaded to Piktochart.
Lastly, try out different formats like for example, social media graphics. With the pre-measured sizes for various social media types, you can also use that dimension to create your own training materials based on that. Hence, you don’t have to always stick to the normal 8.5×11 as there are other types of ways to create learning content. This way, you can improve the engagement of your audience.
When asked about his favorite Piktochart feature, Theo highlighted “collaboration”.
A lot of the other tools were able to sell the bells and whistles, but one thing that they were missing out on was the collaboration.Theodore Paat, Instructional Designer at Affirm
Theo’s team is used to working with G-Suite. Tools like Google Slides or Google Docs are know for their collaboration features. For Theo, it was extremely important to have the same in their visual communication tool. “There isn’t enough time in a day to meet with everyone,” says Theo. With Piktochart, he is able to tag people from his team or organization and quickly ask for their input or feedback.
Theo finds this especially important when working with teams across time-zones. With Piktochart they were able to cut on time spend on calls. Collaboration has made staying close with the rest of the team much easier.
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