CLP Holdings, one of the largest investor-owned power companies in the Asia Pacific Region. They have a SaaS product, Meter Online, that lets users access their energy usage data. User can manage their energy consumption and demand so that they achieve better energy efficiency. The data is tracked by the electricity meter. However, the existing platform was developed in the early 2010s.
Our goal is to redesign the product to be a fast and modern energy tracking platform.
Our research identified 3 primary problems with the old platform.
Users cannot read different meters data in one place.
There is no energy consumption forecast.
No notification or alert on abnormal energy usage.
We invited different stakeholders to have a design workshop. The goal is to align the key problems from the research and generate ideas.
To start with:
We shared the insights and findings from the research.
Prioritize key problems with the team
Think from our user's shoes to list out what do they care and why do they care
How might we solve the problems and fulfill the user's needs？
My role is the facilitator to guide the stakeholder, also a member to participate. It is an interesting chance to observe and receive feedback from the top management. Also, It is a good chance to introduce the process of design. They could have a better understanding of the problems, how we solve them, and ensuring early buy-in from them.
At the end of the session, the team came up with three key HMW:
How might we let users view different meter data in their own way?
How might we send alerts to users based on their needs?
How might we have a better energy forecast based on the weather?
Based on the concepts from the workshop, we designed a low-fi wireframe quickly. and invited our users to have a test on it.
Goal: To validate the concepts from our users, listen to their feedbacks.
To keep it simple, we used the following flow for the test:
Define what we want to know from the test, set up a test plan.
Design different scenarios and tasks for the users
Let the user do the tasks.
Listen to the user's feedbacks
Ask about the overall experience of the concepts, is it really solve their problems?
We invited 10 existing users to try our concepts. They are from different industries, including fast-food chain restaurants, shopping malls, beverage factories, and local small stores. As we want to understand that which concepts or features could benefit which type of users.
We addressed the meaningful features through the concept validation
Group - Users can group different meters data into one customized group, and they can rename the group too.
Compare - Users can compare previous energy data in one chart, which is meaningful to them.
Alert - Setting up customized alerts based on user's needs.
Following the design principle and the users flow to design the interfaces.
The whole platform includes the following:
User registration - allow NEW users to create an account based on their meter number.
Admin panel - allow admin to manage the new application, renew and modify all the subscriptions.
Energy dashboard - allow users to manage their energy data.
Apart from the new features, we also want to improve the experience of how the users read the data. From the previous research and concept validation, we understand the following:
Users would like to understand the peak of their energy demand (kVa).
They want to compare their energy consumption (kWh) to their previous period.
Different industries will read the data in a different way, eg: The hotel businesses compare their energy usage with their previous peak season while a factory will compare their energy usage with their previous year.
It is a challenge for me to fulfill the different types of user's needs and keep it simple.
After 6 months of design and development, this is what we achieved :
New Business Users
1. Communication is the key to a huge project like this. Make sure everyone understands what and why we need to do it.
2. Define the user pain point and delivery the message to stakeholders as early as possible. This can help to break through the barrier and have early buy-in.
3. Design workshop is not an internal show. It must be meaningful. Otherwise, do not do it.