The overall project revolved around :
- Designing and wireframing a new modular and contextual search tool for their ERP software.
I was these designer working on this short project, at this time as a junior UX designer mentored by a senior designer. Client was taking care of the development internally.
Company: Yu Centrik
Role: Junior UX Designer
Timeline: August 2016
The client is a leading software developer for manufacturing, wholesale, construction, logistics and dealerships companies. Their softwares offer a comprehensive panel of features that handle peculiarities of the manufacturing sector as well as providing companies with a well-rounded product (accounting, inventory, order management, etc.).
Design a new contextual search tool for their flagship software. This tool needed to cover as much bases as possible in terms of type of searches, yet remaining dead simple.
This search would have to be :
- Mitigate the impact on development (legacy)
Think & explore
Research, aka getting as much context of use and user data as possible with the ressources and time at our disposal.
In order to nail down the type of searches and the content people were doing most of the time, we solicited our client's customers through a quick series of 3 guerrilla interviews. We lined up those interviews prior presenting our first mockups to the client, so that we had users' data to back up our design choices.
During these interviews, not only we asked questions about their use and expectations about the search function, but we also prepared quick low-fi mockups in Axure to test our assumptions.
After those interviews, here are the following key findings we learned :
- Users typically use one type of search or another (simple versus advanced) but don't need the clutter of the advanced criterias to get in the way of their task completion.
- They mostly use the simple search with the name of the client, the order number, or simply a product number.
With our client, we iterated with 3 quick "design your own interface" workshops on a concept of expandable search that would allow users to get 80% of their searches done with a single search field, while allowing the flexibility to add more criteria to their search, if needed.
We broke down the search into three levels :
- Simple (using default