PlanStreaming™ 

Product description: A supply chain cloud platform solution that helps companies align product, sales, demand, supply, strategy, operations and financial decisions across roles, geographies, products, time horizons, channels, customers and suppliers to improve efficiency and outcomes. It combines predictive, prescriptive, responsive analytics, and technology that enable organizations to respond to business opportunities in a timely manner.

Project Scope: Modernizing Steelwedge's legacy application
When I joined Steelwedge early 2015, we were a design team with very few resources. Understanding this system well and deeply was an arduous task. We felt it was important to deeply understand the business value that the legacy solution provided its users. It was also in the back of our minds to leverage the current value of the legacy system so that we didn't making enemies in engineering or caused chaos among its current users/customers. 
Business Objectives
There were several reasons why Steelwedge’s legacy system required modernization efforts. Besides its extremely outdated interface, the system was only compatible with Windows Explorer. These obstacles hindered:
  • Introducing new features or provide new opportunities
  • Flexibility and scalability
  • System speed and stability
Challenges
  • Getting the buy-in from an engineering team that had a deep history with the product and its business goals
  • Ability to identify which functions or features to be either replaced or simply let go
  • Orchestrating and planning implementation of components from scratch
  • Understanding new capabilities from platform's re-architecturing of the back-end and what it meant to us designers on the front-end

Some examples of redesign exploration created by Steelwedge's former design team located in Bangalore prior to the company's rebranding (2014-2015)

Legacy solution sample, untouched in over 10 years.

The Approach
Modernizing a legacy solution can prove to be much more complicated than simply giving an application a “face-lift.” Before we could share our grand vision with engineers and stakeholders, we needed dive in and get down-and-dirty to really understand how the software has been used before.

First, we broke things down to a component inventory level. Then, we identified the top three workflows to start ideating from. 
Initial dashboard wireframings
Left: Exploring a widget-based approach; Right: Exploring a tasks-based approach based on user feedback.
Dashboard wireframing displaying post-branding logo.
Left: Widget card-flipping; Right: Customizing dashboard widgets
Dashboard post-wireframing - Product titled "Planstreaming" at this point.
Left: Dashboard separating at-a-glance widget view; Right: exploring dashboard styling and data visualization 
Right: Legacy solution had Search page as a pop-up.  
Left: Modernized design of Search recommending changing type of display and page layout
Sprint 15 - main & upper left nav architecture restructure
Sample snippet of initial design system

© 2020 by Renata Swickard.