VIMANA Mobile Dashboard App

Overview

VIMANA provides software solution for Industrial Analytics. The dashboard app is one of the modules that is designed primarily for shop floor managers who can get real-time status updates of the machines from anywhere using their mobile phone. The app helps gain insight into the status, machine health, process parameters, and part production with pre-built dashboards on the mobile device.

Problem Statement

Increase in machine downtimes result in lower production and reduced profits. Plant managers need to be well informed of the overall productivity that help them in take better decisions. This crucial information had to be designed such that it can be accessed from a mobile phone device making it available anytime and anywhere.

Users and audience

Shop floor managers and supervisors, maintenance staff and factory owners play an important role in making decisions based on timely informed decisions. At times these users are on the move and are away from the shop floor for various business reasons. They required to view status information round the clock and while on the move.

Roles and responsibilities

User research, brainstorming, ,sketches, low-fi and high-fi prototype, usability testing

Scope and constraints

Timeline: 3 weeks. Presenting complex charts and progress meters is challenging to design on a small screen. Usability and identifying key relevant pieces of information that make it usable on a mobile had to be identified. Not all functionality designed for the desktop need to be on the mobile and hence detailed research had to be done in identifying what’s essential.

Process and what you did

Research & Strategy

As an initial phase, the analytics and content audit was carried out as part of project assessment. After brainstorming with stakeholders and plant managers the set of information that was crucial to view on a mobile platform were identified.

Findings:

  • 8 in 10 owners wanted to have an eagle view of all their machines.
  • 7 in 10 users agreed that visibility of information was primary. Others wanted to have minimal communication capabilities.
  • Conventionally they were calling an authority personal to enquire about the status through a phone conversation. This sometimes occur during important business meetings which made making decisions very difficult.

Next, I used the insights generated to come up with a persona and to guide my design decisions.

Ideation

Keeping the requirements of the user in mind, I started brainstorming ideas and sketched them on paper. I started by listing all the kinds of useful information that would be needed to be seen in the dashboard in order to help the user keep informed. Several dashboard layouts with different sets of information were thought through.

Goals:

  • The app should look intuitive for the user.
  • Buttons were carefully sized and text were resized so they were visible given the constraint of small screen and environment in which the mobile phone could be used.
  • Navigation needs to be minimal such that user can simply pick a preset dashboard view information immediately.

Features:

  • User can choose from a preset of dashboards to view high level information on each machine.
  • They can select a particular machine to view detailed metrics too, then navigate back to the dashboard view.
  • User can select a date from a calendar widget to see how production was on any particular day and time.
  • The app will remember the last viewed dashboard and show it the next time the user logs in – to make it easy to continue from where it was left.

Design

After several round of iteration on the wireframes, a pixel perfect hi-fi screen prototype was designed. Screens including login and home page for the app were prepared and shared with the stakeholders. Colors and typography were picked from reusable components of UI Kits in Design System.

User Testing

The app was tested with selected business owners to find out on its usability. One-on-one interview with the users were conducted and after probing questions users were able to carry out the given tasks without much difficulty. A common feedback was that the app was so simple that it didn’t have many levels of navigation and switching between dashboards was easy.

Outcomes and lessons

  • All test participants agreed that it helped them get an idea of the current status of their factory’s overall performance.
  • 9 in 10 users felt that they will not need to rely on a manager to call and ask about machine health.
  • On doing an NPS metric evaluation, a score of 80% suggested that the app proved to be successful in meeting the needs of the users.
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