My Role: UX/UI Designer
About: Rapid design of a business application that was developed using Microsoft Power Apps
Team: Myself as the UX/UI Designer, a Technical Engagement Specialist, an Enterprise Data Manager
Prototype: View prototype on MarvelApp
Time: 1 week, May 2020
This Inventory Ordering Business App was created to reimagine the entire ordering process within the company, which is now quicker and more efficient for the employees of Service Management System's two managed brands. By creating this app, we were able to speed up the workflow of the AP & Purchasing Supervisor as well, who eventually handles the incoming order requests on the backside of the app and sends the requests to vendors upon the approval of managers & supervisors. The app makes it easy for the user to track the progress of all of their orders by being updated whenever the status of the orders has changed. The data is connected to the company's CRM platform (Dynamics 365).
Since the business app needed to be designed and shipped urgently, I had to challenge myself to design an app without implementing my go-to primary research method, which is in-depth user interviews. Instead, I was required to create the app based on a couple of stakeholder meetings and brief discussions with future users. When all the problems were identified and concluded based on the notes taken, potential solutions were brainstormed and are listed below:.
What did I do?
Based on the low-fidelity sketches, I started to design the high-fidelity wireframes and prepare a prototype to use during the upcoming usability tests. I have estabilished the branding of the company prior to this project so had to make sure to design the user interface according to the branding guidelines. While I was working on the wireframes, I had to keep in mind that Microsoft Power Apps has technical limitations so I needed to keep the design as simple as possible. I was required by the developer to place all visual elements and the content to a fixed screen size wherever it was possible to do so. I also had to keep in mind that the product will be used by employees who have little to no experience with modern applications so the interface had to be designed using common UI design patterns to increase the ease of use of the product. It was definitely challenging but I have overcome the barriers rapidly.
Before scheduling the moderated remote usability testingon a high-fidelity prototype built in MarvelApp, I put together a Test Plan document to guide me during the usability test where I identified which main tasks I was going to ask them complete on the spot. The actual usability testing sessions took place via Microsoft Teams screensharing due to the pandemic that I was able to record with the permission of the participants so later I could rewatch them.
After reviewing the videos that I recorded of the participants while completing the given tasks, I put together a document of how the participants completed each tasks, what I observed and what they said or recommended regarding the prototype.
View Test Notes
After I had rewatched the recorded videos, I created an affinity map to find out what could be improved on the design. I took notes from the test findings and grouped together the ones that were similar then tried to find patterns across the observations and comments, which is how I got my insights. Based on these insights I made some recommendations how we could improve the user experience for the users.
I met with them team to discuss the changes made and after some discussion we agreed to move forward with them with the exception of the Calendar update due to some technical limitations.
Feel free to interact with the limited-functionality high-fidelity prototype that I built in MarvelApp! Since the app was shipped for internal purposes at the company, only the prototype can be viewed.
This project seemed to be challenging because it required lots of rapid thinking - such as identifying the problems and coming up with solutions in such a short amount of time as the app had to be designed urgently. Another challenge I faced was that I needed to design the app and ensure a seamless user flow for non-tech savvy users by relying on a paper document and a couple of stakeholder discussions. However I knew that if I merge my ideas and proposed solutions to the problems, I can design an app that satisfies both the user and business goals. The users reported to be very happy with the product that saves them so much time when they submit new order requests and the Purchasing Supervisor is able to focus on other tasks since we made his workflow so much quicker than it previously was.