Hitachi Data Reduction Estimator
UX Case Study
The business problem
The data center tools offered by Hitachi Data Systems were designed to give customers added value in managing enterprise data centers.
In this project, a tool for data reduction had been developed, but it was only accessible as a CLI (command line interface).
The business stakeholders wanted to increase customer engagement by adding a GUI.
The users for this application were data center administrators.
Roles and Responsibilities
I functioned as UX Designer. I worked with a Product Owner and about three developers.
The only available research was from the product owner and the lead engineer.
I met with stakeholders several times over the three-month production cycle of the project.
These discovery sessions yielded whiteboard drawings and sketches. However, because of the tight deadline, the UX strategy was based only on stakeholder assumptions.
Eventually we came to a stepped wizard design pattern, which allowed the user to focus on one step at a time.
I decided to introduce a warm color palette, with a visual hierarchy determined by increased contrast.
Benefits to users and the business
After the product launched with its new GUI, there was no available success metrics.
I was able to view versions of the product after the engineers launched it.
Success was verified by what was shared by the stakeholders.
The product team for this product was based in Totsuka, Tokyo, Japan. Initial discovery sessions were conducted by video conferences.
Eventually, my manager determined that the project could only be completed effectively if I worked onsite with the product team.
I came to Japan with some basic wireframes.
Multiple iterations and discovery sessions led us to what was finally handed off to developers.
My trip was very short, and I had little contact with the product team in Japan after I returned to the United States.
There was some communication challenges because of my limited understanding of the Japanese language (I have since completed 2+ years of Japanese courses).
After returning to the United States, the product team in Totsuka shared some screen shots of the completed project.
I was not able to qualify or quantify the results against any KPIs. In some of these enterprise applications, stakeholders will de-prioritize important UX strategies.