B2B Desktop and Tablet Apps
Content Modeling, Service Design
Defining a Methodology
Boucheron is a Parisian brand selling luxury jewellery all over the world. The company recently restaured their iconic store in Place Vendome in Paris. Improving the building setting was a great opportunity to review their products' transferring and storing process. For this project, all staff at Boucheron - from salesperson to back office managers - have been involved in developing the digital solutions that would support their work on a daily basis. This is why this project was mostly supported by a service design methodology. Different fields of work have been involved in this project such as back-end development, IT projet management, visual design and UX design. This last field were attributed to me and I was fully in charge of moderating the scope definition and user research workshops as well as designing the apps coming up from this research phase.
Determining the Project Scope
The analysis of the clients’ brief and interviews with the end users (Boucheron staff) for the first time revealed issues with two main processes.The first one was for the salespersons to improve the speed at which they are able to show jewellery to customers. Boucheron customers are wealthy people expecting a quick, seamless and sophisticated service. One of the staff requirements is to make sure that customers do not witness any transferring process of jewellery pieces between the back office where they are stored and the selling table as well as to perform this task as quickly as possible. The second problem is about security during this transferring phase between places and floor within the store. A new system tracking each piece of jewellery has been planned to be installed by Boucheron in their new store. Therefore, the design of the appropriate digital solutions had to be in line with this technical aspect. I analyzed these problems directly with the clients through workshops. This research phase helped us define the functional scope and project requirements.
Task Flows and User Requirements
The approach has been to first carefully interview all project stakeholders and their user requirements depending on their role in the process. For the two main processes identified (transfering and storing), roles and responsibilities were attributed. To define a shared vision of the functional scope for both the clients and our team, we created tasks flows of the two processes in which were discussed and iterated in co-conception workshops with end users and client’s IT team. Based on the task flows, we used content modelling to offer custom digital solutions to the problems identified.
04 Design Solution
For each process, an interface answering to a user need has been designed. We needed to set a common OS to ensure the communication between the interfaces. One problem was that sales assistants were using iPhones, salespersons were using Windows tablets and back office managers were using Windows desktop. We jointly agreed that Windows would be the main platform to host the tablet and the desktop apps while the communication with sales assistant on iOS would be done through Skype. This is why the design of theses interfaces are compliant with Universal Windows Platform. All sketching, wireframing and prototyping of the two apps were designed based on their respective tasks flow in order to validate or iterate with the IT and development teams.
Sales Tablet App
The first app was intented to support the salesperson's work during the jellewery demonstration to customers. It is displayed on a tablet integrated to the selling table. The functionnal scope of the app included the process of pairing a salesperson with an assistant, ordering to the back office the transfer of a specific product, asking the assistance for a catering service such as offering coffee, water or champagne to the customers, asking the assistant for a piece to be packed after a sale, asking for a special service such as calling a taxi, calling the store senior management or notifing a sale to the back office. Most of this functional scope required being paired with an assistant so it was important to work on this particular journey and ease the process as much as possible. It is important to remember that the salespersons are focused on their customers and cannot dedicate more than two or three clicks to the app to place their orders and that their cognitive load is very limited at that time.
Back Office Desktop App
This desktop app was designed for back office workers located in the store's basement where all the jewelleries are labeled and stored. The Back Office Desktop app had to provide a clear view to its users of all information about each product and had to ease the process of searching for a specific product and find its location. All information has been organised and prioritised depending on its importance and frequency of use by the managers. A sorting system of the information has been set to help the user for specific tasks.
The user also had be able to track a product at any given moment in its journey to the sales table for security purposes and to provide feedback to the sales assistant and salesperson asking for this product. Some of the user actions were designed to trigger automated system action to communicate directly to the other members of the staff and to provide accurate history of the products transfering to one place to another within the store.
Sketch + Invision
We designed the prototype using InVision which enabled our team to communicate with our client's IT and marketing teams as well as internally with visual designers, back-end and front-end developers, and the project managers. All updates were quickly shared to everyone and allowed to build the technical structure of the communication between the apps, the external payment back office and Skype.
06 Personal Contribution
Roles and Team Organisation
In this project, I have been fully responsible for the scope definition and the apps’ UX design. In particular, I attended preparatory meetings with the clients to understand their needs, I prepared and run several workshops with staff members and later reported on the outcomes to colleagues and clients. Based on these results, I then identified, in discussion with the client, precisely what the issues were and proposed initial task flows. These were refined through a series of internal discussions as well as regular meetings with the client, which I took part in. Once agreed, I worked in constant collaboration with the development teams of the two apps and was the design contact point for our in-house team. Throughout this project, I have ensured that I and the people I worked with respect of the project manager's timetable and produced high quality work. This was recognised by the client as well as internally.
07 What’s Next
Gathering Performance Data and Testing
We are currently waiting for the first deployment within the new Boucheron store to be able to test the sales and back office apps on-site. Several techniques could be applied to gather data about the performance of both the process itself and the usability of the apps. We could use a combination of interviews and observations; we could collect data by tracking targeted events on the back office desktop app; and we could run usability tests on a series of tasks to perform.