EchoUser

Nimbula Cloud Services Research & Design

Prior to their acquisition by Oracle, Nimbula was an “Infrastructure as a Service” (IaaS) company that provided the tools for other companies to create and manage their own cloud services. They were faced with an intricate problem: how could they make their product intuitive enough for normal developers and cloud service end users without concealing its technical prowess? To solve this challenge, EchoUser conducted an end-to-end product redesign, from user research, to wireframes and testing, to pixel perfect mockups.

Approach

Our biggest challenge was this: normal people don’t “speak API.” As such, the existing UI — essentially an API with a skin — needed to be redesigned and re-architected. User research activities and a comprehensive iterative design process led to a product designed to deliver powerful IaaS functionality in a user-friendly package.

First, we conducted over 12 user interviews and workshops to delve into user behavior and identify key user flows. We then translated our findings into a new product experience. A home screen provided much-needed context to novice and expert users of the complex app. We also provided complex JSON files with a visual face to help more novice users manage intricate cloud operations.

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Impact

At the end of the engagement, we delivered comprehensive research findings, as well as detailed wireframes and visual mockups that communicated how the redesigned product should look and function — and within a year, Nimbula was acquired by cloud computing giant Oracle.

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