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Redesigning complex business application

How do you transform the user experience of a 12-year-old application without losing existing loyal customers?

Overview

Innominds transformed the user experience of a 12-year-old field service management solution (developed by a major Silicon Valley Company) into a contemporary and more intuitive product leading to improved usability and deeper market acceptance, all the while maintaining the existing customer base.

Field Service Management

THE PROBLEM

Field Service technicians have the important job of installing and maintaining products and equipment at client sites, often repairing items like appliances in a home, installing telecommunications gear or trouble shooting industrial equipment.

But management of the field services industry is a significant challenge as people, products and assets are constantly on the move and work orders and schedule are constantly changing. Effectively managing the logistics and cost of a field service operation has an important impact on a company’s profitability and client relations. Consequently, a $2 billion market for field service management (FSM) software has developed to support the industry. These solutions integrate with various administrative functions like billing, accounting and enable companies to locate their vehicles and technicians, and schedule or assign work to them.

Given the mobility of field service technicians and the challenge of managing logistics, field service organizations were very early adopters of mobile technology.

However, in the case of our client, this evolution resulted in a very complex interface that took too long to navigate. For example to move 5 people from one organizational node to another required 7 steps. Simply setting up new entities in the system such as employees, vehicles, and work shifts, billings and other routine tasks took way to long.

While the interface was not optimal, workers had become accustomed to navigating these complex menus and features. These screens and menus had become a part of workers routines and drastic change could disrupt the workflows of field service workers.

Innominds’s client needed to update their user interface to streamlined processes without upsetting current users who had become comfortable with the existing UX.

 
 
60%
Reduction in time to perform an action for the users
30%
Reduction in setup time by defining a simple, modular first time setup process
s
Easy filtering search for any entity in the system
 
 

THE INNOMINDS PROCESS, SOLUTION AND FINAL RESULT

THE PROCESS

Before any designing or coding began, Innominds conducted an extensive technical study that consulted key stakeholders to define the overall data model and map entity relationships. The large amount of data the FSM system was tasked to manage made this a very important step. Preserving connections and models would also limit the disruption of current business processes. For example, a clear on-boarding process that would help transition users to the new system automatically defined relationships between people, places and things.

Once the data model was understood, Innominds created wireframes and prototypes to gather feedback from users. The testing process also not only helped designers gauge users’ understanding and interest in the new design but uncovered ways to reduce the amount of time a new organization was set up in the system.

THE SOLUTION

At the end of the engagement, Innominds delivered a user experience that featured an effective visual design that made it easier to read and navigate while maintaining the brand value. The solution also included a natural language processing global search feature that indexes actions and entities, navigating the user directly to the intended task. The simplified user experience also made it more attractive to new users positioning the company for future growth.

THE RESULT

The business impact of the new interface was immediately apparent.

  • Human language commands reduced the time it took administrators to access info and performs actions by 60%.
  • Set up time was reduced by 30% through a simple modular setup process
  • The process to search for any entity in the system was also significantly streamlined
The design created by Innominds has taken our product to the next level and has paved the way for our future growth. Our existing customers are very excited to see the new look and can’t wait to start using it.

                                                                – Product Manager, Innominds Client

Practices Involved

Case Studies