This product was designed to serve an organization that deals with operational and field projects. The platform has been in continuous renovation over the years, and the organization faced many difficulties in trying to maintain uniformity and proper UX while also keeping at a technology forefront.
The platform serves a diversity of users on a daily basis, and so it requires a deep personalization process that will allow various unique personas’ accessibility and work flow optimization.
I stepped into the role at a point where the platform needed major-scale changes in visibility, usability and in locating the suitable technological solution for the system’s streamlining and functionality.
A research of massive scale was required, as the platform needs to cater to a large variety of personas and with daily users reaching tens of thousands. My research goal was to form a clear drill-down of all different personas, segments, components and scenarios while also getting an objective view of the full picture and scope.
The scale of end users begins with those who use the platform for information consumption purposes only, and ends with users who regularly manage active events and edit information from field and/or remotely.
The original system was built decades ago and grew up in patchwork form due to recurring needs and requirements along the years. Therefore the system lacked cohesiveness and the formulated UX was in fact more a product of operational requirements while disregarding user requirements.
The Platform Programming Languages replacement was implemented in cooperation with the organization’s management, after in-depth understanding of needs and values, followed by a thorough study of the various optional technologies.
The UX was implemented for multiple devices; Responsive desktop, laptop, mobile and in particular for a network of giant screens that allows extensive control over organizational activities.
The research phase required maximum accuracy and included meetings with PMs, organization and sub-department management and conducting observations & interviews with a variety of end users. Those research meetings are important to a designer, it firstly served as a quality tool to reflect and coordinate expectations between all stakeholders and subsequently led to a formulation of the super-goals enabling a guideline throughout stages of the entire process.
Learning the product required preliminary learning of the organization’s characteristics and data. The incoherence of the product and lack of a leading method brought with them complexity and challenges to the research & learning phase. The product’s snapshot was an array of patched up components which served each user in its own limited manner without communicating or interfacing.
Therefore, I decided to study each part separately and perform user research for each aspect. Despite the huge volume I was able to map the system and its different uses efficiently and in a short time frame.
The platform lacks uniformity and lacks understandable UX, processes performed by users are merely a result of the training done by superiors as opposed to the platform offering accessibility. Users find it difficult to orientate and perform processes in areas where they were not trained to do so.
Users are forced to use communication outside the system, such as mobile and emails, in order to convey a message, explanation and instruction to other users.
The system suffers from disorganization and lack of hierarchies between screens and components.
An essential area of the system used daily by senior management for the purposes of setting up, managing and executing projects.
Each project is divided into tasks and conducted within a defined time frame. Project management requires assigning roles to staff members and placing them in different locations. It also includes logistics, such as accommodation and food for staff members, allocation of tools and vehicles, checking attendance and availability, transferring and replacing staff members on an ongoing basis, and more.
The original screen does not serve the stated requirements and, similar to other areas of the system, forces its users to perform basic tasks such as; Emails, messaging, calls, reminder alerts and calendar settings by using external apps and means.
Many actions require a large number of clicks and multiple screens and tabs, this creates difficulty for the user and slows down work. The system lacks hierarchy and doesn’t allow its user an actual control panel or view of the big picture, the project, its data and requirements.
First I performed an examination of the existing method which was based on a tabular task list. It was important for me to be careful about any quick changes, and to work while taking into account the user’s mental model. This was a user that has existed within the same system for decades.
With the help of initial rapid wireframing and further research, I came to the understanding that the average user does not rely on habits within the system rather he is required each time and task to orient himself, therefore he is in a constant state of avoidance and minimal use of the platform mainly as an “inventory list”, while the rest of the tasks are performed outside the system.