Mobile UX Design
My Role: UX Designer/Researcher | Timeline: 2.5 weeks | Project: Freelance
Team: 3 UX Designers, 3 Engineers, 1 Stakeholder | Tools Used: Sketch, InVision, Photoshop
Methods: User Research, User Interviews, Usability Testing, Personas, Comparative Analysis, Empathy Mapping, Design Studio, Sketching, Wireframing, Rapid Prototyping
Over the last decade, Caterpillar has built more fuel efficient engines and machines for the construction industry. With fuel costs on the rise and emission regulations strickening, the company is looking for more alternatives in becoming more fuel efficient.
Caterpillar approached our team focused on becoming the world's leading eco-friendly manufacturer of construction and engines. In order to achieve this, they asked us to create a digital medium that would help machine operators' work more efficiently, resulting in fuel savings and increased fuel economy.
What I Did
Along with my UX team and Caterpillar's product engineering team, I helped discover problem areas related to machine/operator efficiency and designed the wireframes and prototype for this project. The end result was a mobile dashboard prototype designed to provide operators with their personal performance metrics and suggested videos to improve performance.
Our team had the pleasure of having direct access to Caterpillar's users throughout the entire design process. We conducted 25+ interviews with fleet owners, machine operators, and foremen. Some took place over the phone, others occurred at a construction site. Many hours were dedicated brainstorming, ideating, and validating. We created personas and ran a team design studio which lead to the solution we would design for.
Key insights from operators:
• There's a wide variety of skill level amongst all operators.
• "Good operators are hard to come by". - John, large fleet owner
• Older operators were opposed having a digital device help them "work smarter".
• New and younger operators were more open to having a digital device "help them work smarter".
• Older operators were stubborn and set in their ways when operating machinery.
• Operators learn best by observation + trial & error.
Finding a Solution
One of the more challenging aspects of this project was determining a root problem. The more time we spent investigating problem areas, the more problems arise, making it difficult to choose one thing to solve for.
On the right is a photo of a device placed in the cockpit of a small percentage of Caterpillar machines. This device is so small, you need to lean up to it just to read the display.
It was during this time when we took this photo that we realized what problem to focus on solving for: creating a interface with enough usability to help operators track their performance metrics.
By taking into account that operators learn new techniques by observing their peers operate machines, we came up with the idea to incorporate videos within the app to help correct performance issues identified.
It was easy to guess what colors were necessary to include in the design of this app, but we used Caterpillar's style guide to coordinate with the company's brand.
At the end of the 2.5 week design sprint, we presented our work to all the stakeholders on the team. They were very pleased with the results and used what we created as a platform to go off of as this project continues.