While my work in FOM I developed new projects along with supporting the current ones. The main activity of the company is sociological researches. I faced the following task: “It is necessary to make a report builder,” and later on this task eventually turned into a full-fledged service, both for the company employees and the clients.
The company management believed that customers should be given the opportunity to independently generate the report. In fact, this was not the case. I immediately formed a list of questions for the management, for the FOM employees and our future clients.
Together with the manager, we conducted the interview and found out a huge amount of problems and learned what was wrong in the process of preparing the reports. The report itself could have been prepared all the year round and there were no interim results, since all the data was impressed and printed. As the result, the client received a thick pile of papers. There were problems at the stage of preparation and data collection, since there was no single channel of communication and no managers attached to the client.
When it was clear what problems were to be solved with the help of the interface, I defined the roles and the list of the functionality that I later on discussed with the developers. They advised to take something away and something to simplify, since there already was a company ready to try this service.
Nobody knew at what stage this or that report was; who was responsible; what stages were ahead and what stages were already passed and so on. It turned out that the clients were not interested in the report itself, but only in a few pages, which they had to put on their superiors’table.
As a result, I had a clear understanding of what the service should be and I designed the layouts that were packed into the prototype and shown at the meeting. The client approved everything, the company allocated a budget and the development began.
I tried to solve the main problems on the client’s side and tried to give the opportunity to fully control the progress of the projects, as well as generate intermediate reports or simply graphs. In addition to the list of projects, the client could see the deadlines, the responsible ones and the status. The client had the complete understanding of what was happening in his projects. As the schedules were ready, they immediately appeared in the client's dashboard.
The main task of the manager’s account was to manage client’s projects and to assist in the formation of the widgets, reports and loading the required documents on the page of each project. Charts for all the projects were stored on one page with the ability to sort. Managers could upload the information and create graphs.