Imagine your company moving into 6,000 m2 of unfamiliar office space. Not only will you face organisational and logistical obstacles, but you’ll also have to go through an assimilation period with your employees as their productivity plummets due to time spent navigating around the office.
One of our clients wanted to overcome this challenge and make the move a smooth process for their team. They chose to build an enterprise mobile app that uses beacon technology to help employees find their way in the large space. We helped the client create a truly modern work environment which makes employees happy (employer branding goal) and encourages the team to make full use of the office (productivity management goal).
We built native apps for iOS and Android to provide the client’s employees with crucial information about their workspace. The app has a fully interactive office map at its core. Employees can use it to quickly find their own location and reach the right people and places. The app includes information on room size, number of seats, available equipment and current occupancy, all very helpful for impromptu meetings.
The app navigates to people (colleagues), objects (e.g. the coffee machine), and rooms (e.g. the conference room). It remembers recent searches and offers the option to create groups of users. Employees can also find out whether the person they are searching for is busy.
We assisted the client with the entire process of mobile app development: from the concept to the implementation. We started with a Product Design Sprint - a tool to solve business problems through design, prototyping, and testing ideas with the client. We went to the client's office for two weeks, where we experienced the challenge by ourselves. Indeed, we did get lost. Multiple times.
Having an idea about the problems and a concept of how to solve it, we have came up with a solution along with two design concepts for the office map. Then we ran a Design Feedback Session to work on the best design. Wanting to ensure the concept’s usability, we performed user tests with an interactive map prototype (made in Framer App) by giving users tasks to complete. This helped us to create the final product - an easy to use and understandable mobile app with indoor location system for enterprise employees.
The project team consisted of a Product Manager, a Product Designer, two iOS developers, two Android developers, and a QA expert. The scope of Netguru’s responsibility within the project included conceptualisation, the PDS, UX/UI design, Android app development with Kotlin, and iOS app development with Swift. We also worked with a hardware partner to integrate beacons with our mobile apps and performed a lot of system tests (e.g battery, memory, and load tests).
The complexity of the office map (based on a technical drawing with nearly 100% accuracy) was a big challenge. We had to build a Google Maps-like system for 6,000 m2 of space, presenting it in a readable way. The map had to be attractive, even playful, so that it wouldn’t intimidate or frustrate users. For the beacon integration, we worked closely with a hardware partner: the alpha version of the devices wasn’t performing well, so we engaged in beacons SDK consultancy to improve their performance by suggesting fixes. The app uses more than 500 beacons, which ensures high accuracy of navigation.
We did a lot of our work in the client’s office, running tests and placing beacons, which required a great deal of commitment and flexibility from us. We had to push to deliver as many features as we could within deadlines, while coordinating our work with the client and the beacon hardware partner.
Our client involved their employees in the product thesis test in order to get to know the office space better. We helped with an MVP rollout where the main aim was to create a collaborative, inspiring work environment where information is readily available. We managed to overcome many technical complexities; as a result, we built a stable and well-performing system for workspace management and scored 10/10 on our NPS survey of client satisfaction with this project.