Project Description

Sustainability, Architecture, Engineering, Property management

PlanIT Impact Web Application Importing Open Data

Using Big Data to Improve Sustainable Design

Work

Challenge

Simplify a complex process to integrate open sustainability data with third-party structural design applications, making it easy for users to assess – and share – the environmental impacts of their designs.

Approach

User insights drive features and accessibility options

Beginning with observation and interviews, we assessed users’ goals throughout design and construction processes. We used these needs to define product requirements and ensure the new tool would fit seamlessly into existing workflows, increasing the chance of adoption.

PlanIt Impact Prototype Example – screen captures and Axure link (from Project folders)

Prototype example (from old UA site) – file

Concept Iteration

As we began to bring this new tool to life, we created low-fidelity design concepts that presented substantially different approaches to organizing key workflows. Testing these early-stage concepts with users unlocked insights, preferences, and expectations beyond what we identified in the initial interviews. It also allowed our designers to determine which features needed to be available for mobile use as well as desktop.

Responsive And Adaptive Design

The final step prior to development was to incorporate the results of the concept testing into a fully-functioning prototype, including data integration and visualizations. We then tested the prototype with users to validate the final design. This final round of research validated the responsive and adaptive features the team designed for mobile devices and ensured the data visualizations were clear and intuitive.

“We were slowed down because we didn’t have a clear process for our app development. The unbiased critical-thinking, understanding, and structure that Useagility brought to our project was an important part of our success. They helped us focus so we could design and develop a better product and hit our deadlines more consistently.”

-Dominique Daviso

AIA – Founder & CEO, PlanIT Impact
Principal, DRAW Architecture + Urban Design

Results

User Research + Design Thinking = Intuitive Usability

Partnering with Useagility from the earliest stages to ensure that PlanIt Impact’s product idea was viable and that feature set and usability exceeded user expectations. In order to simplify the complex data-sharing process, we engaged users and iterated on designs to incorporate user feedback, resulting in a product that was responsive and user-friendly.

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