There's a lot of elbow grease that goes into every apple or fruit that you buy and orchard farmers everywhere have spent countless hours (and blood, sweat, and tears) to ensure the maximum production and profitability every season, even in the face of one of the most unpredictable elements of life: Mother Nature. Whilst other industries have embraced technology, the orchard business has largely remained, shall we say "organic", in how they run their picking and quality control aspects of the business. To help orchard farmers be more productive and better equipped to accurately predict their outputs, the Hectre team wanted to a build a product that can solve the farmers' most dire problems and even ones that they didn't even know they had.
The Hectre team approached us to redesign their product's entire end-to-end user experience, from how managers clocked their team in and out every day to how owners managed payroll and production data. Their initial MVP was sufficient to acquire early adopters, but as their go-to-market strategy expanded into the U.S., so did the scope of their product's overall functionality and end goal. Turning paper digital was just the first step in their product roadmap, Hectre wants to uncover useful insight, using mobile and tablet devices as well as a desktop web app, to help farmers better forecast and run their overall business.
We were mindful of our users' interaction in their daily environment and designed in such a way that both the interaction and information architecture can be digested and utilized without a lot of fuss. A key interaction that we focused on was reducing the number of clicks needed to perform any action, maximizing the screen real estate and showcasing as much as information as possible without sacrificing aesthetics. We also learned from talking to orchard management that giving users a "one glance" summary will both speed up operations and help management make quick decisions on the go.
One of the joys of working with a startup is we get to take part on the same journey as them, navigating the same challenging roads and solving problems as they are shot at us. A large portion of our project involved crafting user flows that not only solved the given problems today but the ongoing challenges that face orchard farmers, including use cases that may be specific to the New Zealand or U.S. market. Examples such as a specific user flow for cherry picking and performance management of part time and full time staff.