CSR Assistant

A first of its kind companion app for customer relationship management. This cloud application reduced a complex digital buying systems, evolved employee role, and modernized technology and product portfolio.

Case Study

An enterprise companion for efficient digital buying

Project Keywords
Timeline

Oct. 2021 - Dec. 2022

Platform

Enterprise Cloud Applicaton (Angular/Azure)

My Role

Sr. UI/UX Designer

My Role

While staffed as the Sr. UX/UI Design lead for Avanade, I worked with a 9 member cross-functional work team. My contribution included UX design, research, UI Design and visual design. I translated insights into design interactions with storyboards, wireframes, user flows. I partnered with the Product Manager to manage backlog and release notes, and I worked directly with the development team to make feasible design plans and hand them off for build.

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CSR Assistant App

View the final product where you can review the features and design solutions.

Skills

Objective

Inconsistent customer support Complex work overwhelmed by confusing tools while managing customer support
  • Fractured collaboration
    Inconsistent workflows between different groups across the 9 different regions. Communication silos also impacted regular updates and knowledge transfer.
  • Training and development pains
    Veteran CSRs often create their own processes on top of the regional differences. CSR work was very complicated, so in addition to training there was also a mentor program.
  • Disjointed workplace experience impacts bottom line
    The technology portfolio was a mess, redundant tools added difficulty to learning processes. Many CSRs were entry-level so they were had very new job skills. Difficulties impacted employee retention.

My Contributions

I served a hyphenated role as UX Designer and UI Designer for this project. I practiced  Design Thinking and lead co-creation and discovery activities to grow user discovery. Below are some of the work products which I produced during each phase of the project. 

Double Diamond design process
ResearchInteraction DesignPresentationDelivery
Design Thinking Activities & Desktop ResearchSketch Components & Design Wireframe IterationsArticulate User story and Design solutions Handoff to Development for Build
Brought focus to user problems and pains by holding workshops and doing interviews with users and work team collaborators.I hand sketch with boxes and lines first., then I meet with different cross-functional workmates to land on a feasible design solutions. I build a storyboard of each flow to show how the whole design matched with needs on the users journey. After working with developers to confirm plans, I use my knowledge of HTML code and visual design tool to prepare final files.

Research

Problem #1

Understanding system and business needs

This client did not allow our team to access to current employees who were CSRs, so I had to be creative about how to develop understanding about which pains were worth solving for the business.

In spite of limited user interaction I used my own desktop research methods and some resourceful interviewing to articulate the business problems and user pains beyond what the client stakeholders shared.

Research plan for employee discovery
‎Creative UXR Plan 1

This is the strategy I presented to client to describe how I would do user discovery without direct interaction with current employees.

Results

Built a 3 dimensional model of employee experience on top of the 1 dimensional "task based" experience that was provided.

Interaction Design

Architecting user interactions from user insights

This client was a large complex enterprise. The outlook at the company was almost completely based on “system performance”. I relied upon team collaboration to make sure my ideas about represented human-centered design feasible solutions.

I mapped the journey and the systems for the digital buying process to create understanding of how the insights impacted the experience. I went to Glassdoor, Indeed and Linkedin to learn about the sentiment which CSRs had about their job duties and their employee experience.

Map of user flow
Service Blue print of the CSR work process.
Results

Guided the team through prioritizing more than 50 features during backlog refinement.

Using data captured from desktop research on Glassdoor, Indeed and LinkedIn. I built little mental models for CSRs experience.

"Getting through my actual work is so much more complicated than training because I have to manage customer requests, online inquiries, as well as the supply chain pipeline."

-Janelle D., Customer Service Reps

Resolving order blockers was a key task for the CSR role. Some of the order blockers were more rare than others, so it was hard to remember the steps to resolve, the meanings of codes and terminology and make decisions.

Online orders are direct to customer (D2C). These orders skip the sales rep layer. CSRs need high visibility and reminders to prioritize these orders. 

Across the board tools had poor learnability because several different apps did the exact same things. Some were hard to use on smaller laptops, none of them were integrated with each other. None of the apps were designed for accessibility.

Design

Designing the interface from scratch

Vertical space and overwhelming amounts of data were big challenges on this project. It was also very difficult to learn terminology and relationship for the goals of the work. By using iterative development I was able to use collaboration to discuss designs in depth.

Hand drawings helped me to build understanding about how user stories were related to components. I often brought in basic wireframes to discuss data, functionality or even feature benefits with different team mates.

Iterative Co-Creation with development in mind
Hand drawn early sketches of components
and design tokens
I use wireframes with boxes and lines to layout screens and spacing

Building designs iteratively allows me to explore different ideas quickly, and bring work products into collaborative discussions to articulate design stories.

Results

My hybrid background with design, basic web page development and UX design allowed me to play a hyphenated role on the team and kept headcount lean. I personally built dev packages for handoff to the build team.

CSR Assistant A companion app that makes customer support frictionless for large global digital portfolios.​

Final product contains client name and details that are under NDA.
Please request password.
68% of employees sited better desk management and organization as user benefits on the post-implementation survey.
Introduced machine learning and other advanced technology to reduce the learning curve of key workflows. Reduced number of clicks and screens required to complete tasks.
Content personalization allows different user archetypes to complete advanced search inquiries and allowed collaboration across regional teams.
Information Architecture and slick interface reduce the complexity of customer research or order processing. Contextual data and content interactions.
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