Sensord - UX Case Study

Enabling Small Industry professionals to automate the monitoring of their environment


Increase in Productivity


Task Success


System Usability Success (SUS)


Project Background


Several manufacturing units, labs, pharmacies & storage spaces need to regularly monitor temperature & other environmental conditions within their premises due to the type of sensitive stuff they store. They spend a lot of human resources and time in regularly monitoring these spaces and even then human errors happen.

How do we provide an intuitive solution which they can trust and easily setup to monitor their storage areas?

My scope of work

Senior Product Designer

User Experience, User Research, User Interface & Visual Design

June 2019 - May 2020

Team structure

Onshore client team:
2 Product managers & 1 Product owner

Offshore team:
One designer, 5 developers, 1 Project Manager


Is there something we can do to help the small industry professionals in tackling their specific use cases and problems related to their environmental monitoring tasks?

Target Users

Precision Agriculturists

For monitoring the soil humidity, temperature and salinity.

Warehouse Operators

For monitoring the environmental conditions when storing sensitive stuff such as medical products.

Pharmacists & Electrochemists

Pharmaceutical products need to be maintained at certain conditions and hence to regularly monitor them.

Environmental scientists

For closely monitoring the environmental conditions surrounding their lab specimens.

01 - Empathise & RESEARCH

What difficulties are the students facing?

Primary Research - Qualitative

Our client had some initial contacts matching the above target groups and I picked 5 people initially to have a research call with. The plan was pretty simple.

The research plan was to understand their current scenario and work, the areas where such a solution can help, problems with their current solution [if they are already using one] or other aspects.

The answers were pretty diverse. But the underlying theme was if the business heads were not ready on spending extra for a specialised resource to take care of these things, they did not want a complex solution to be dumped on their heads. Remember, their actual work itself is very complicated and requires skill.

Few User Quotes

“Most of the systems available now are too technical and difficult to set up & manage.”

“I don't want to spend my entire day navigating around complex data trying to make sense of it.”

“I need to reduce the man-hours I'm spending on closely monitoring the environment 24x7.”

Secondary Research - Quantitative

The next step was to confirm my assumptions with targeted questions and get some quantitative insights. I managed to find 16 people for this step. Getting hold of a lot more people to do quantitative research was hard since this was an enterprise client project and it has its difficulties.

We sent a Google survey with specific questions and the results were as follows:

Survey Insights


Apprehensive over
complex electronics

Unsure how to handle the electronic hardware and the complex process of setting it up.


Need secured and
remote monitoring

People do want to spend the nights at their homes without worrying about the safety of the inventory or the environment.


Need full automation of all monitoring

Users were frustrated that most of the existing solutions still required some amount of their time for management.


Lack of Trust in Softwares

People who don’t use any existing solutions are unsure about trusting new software to take care of critical items

02 - Competitor study

What are our competitors doing?

Some of our competitors were:

I found the reason why our target users find the existing solutions were difficult to understand. Except for Hubitat, most of our competitor solutions were aimed at huge industries with specialised people for monitoring and many other use cases. Hence the use of complex electronic devices, circuits, jargons etc

But that doesn't mean there was anything wrong with the approach of our competitors. Everything has a target audience and quite possibly the target users of these market players could be huge industries and highly technical fields.

But we were targeting users in much smaller companies or industries where the solution needs to be different.

It's like the case of the bullet train. It's a badass and powerful transportation means which could take you anywhere. But is it the right way to get to the next street?


And the problem was...

Affinity mapping is my go-to method any day to find insights from unorganised data. Using this method, I ended up with four major buckets into which most of the identified issues fell.

Lack of intuitive solutions for Industrial purposes

Essentially they wanted something as simple as Google Home for small industrial usages.

Too much resources spent on 24*7 Monitoring

They had to employ lot of human resouces for monitoring which took a toll on their expenses.

Apprehensive about trusting softwares

The kind of stuff they store require strict monitoring and any lapse would cause a loss in millions

Lack of a tailored solution to out target group

Our users felt all the existing products lacked some of the features which they expected to have.


How might we enable Small Industrialists and Professionals to remotely monitor their environment without too much human intervention, more safety and less resource cost? The lack of an intuitive & easy to manage solution in this space can make us a market differentiator.


Getting our creative juices flowing

To collaborate with our client team in Ireland, we used the online collaboration platform 'Miro'. We ran short and fast brainstorming slots where each of us came up with as many ideas as possible. We then discussed those, discarded few ideas based on the number of votes.

We then prioritised the ideas using the MoSCoW model approach.

MoSCoW Prioritisation of Sensord Features


An IoT Platform integrated with a central hub and monitoring sensors designed for ease of use & setup, autonomous monitoring and easy management of alerts, teams and sites.

Business Goal

Register 20% more growth in month on month customer adoption rate.


  • React - Responsive Web App
  • Node Web kit - Desktop App
  • Minimal Mobile App

Key success factor

Increasing the work efficiency of the users by atleast 30% and reduce the business cost by atleast 20%.

Design Process


Simplifying Hardware and Electronics

“Most of the systems available now are too technical and difficult to setup & manage.”

Roxanne Padilla, Environmental Scientist

While solutions for the consumer industry has become very simple, however the enterprise industry still had to use legacy solutions which weren't user friendly.

“I'm always afraid that I'll press something wrong and screw up any hardware device”

Timothy Fitzgerald, Agriculturist

Our users were not confident in setting up hardware devices which look too technical or required to read loads of instructions & documentation.

Making the user's more comfortable in using Electronic Devices has two parts to it:

As soon as the user has registered and filled out the necessary information, they need to choose the type of hub. We display the 3D models which makes it very easy for them to compare the images on the screen with the device in their hand and choose the correct one. This experience of reflecting the real-world scenario is followed throughout the app.

These were some of the iterations I made using hand-drawn sketches and wireframes.

These were some of my earlier ideas for the onboarding flow some of which has evolved into the Hi-Fi designs you see below.

We walk the user through adding the hub with clear instructions and feedback.

After adding the hub, there was a question of whether we should make it mandatory for the user to add the sensor also. Since a hub alone is not enough unless there is a sensor connected to it.

But we decided against it as it would be a restriction for the user to proceed. Thus we added just a prompt asking the user if they would like to add which they could skip. Flexibility is always nice.


Viewing and analysing Sensor Data

“I don't want to spend my entire day navigating around complex data trying to make sense of it.”

Winona Lambert, Pharmacist

Our end users wanted to get insights fast at a glance. This shouldn't look like a separate job in itself requiring extra skillsets.

“My primary need is to see the real time value and probably also see the trend graph.”

Timothy Fitzgerald, Agriculturist

The most identified needs were to see the current environmental value, it's trend and other statistics such as average value over a period.

For making it simple, let's consider a shipping and logistics company. They would have several warehouses under their control and each warehouse will have several sections storing different items.

In our solution, I called the 'Warehouses' as 'Sites' and the different sections of the warehouses as 'Rooms'. The access for different sites and rooms depends on the user permissions. If the person is a superuser they would have access to several sites.

These were some of the iterations I made using hand-drawn sketches and wireframes.

The room card leads to the room dashboard where I show the different sensor values. One of our insights from the user research was that they would like to see the historical readings and not just the current/live readings.

To give more flexibility to the user, I designed the following customisable options in the dashboard:

I did some research on the types of charts which would be more meaningful and I found that a simple line and bar/column chart are the best types to provide easy to understand information.

To give more insights about a particular sensor, I also designed navigation from each sensor card to its page. In addition to the reading plot, I added some averages and alert statistics of the sensor, so that the user will get to know immediately how the corresponding environmental condition is prevailing in each room.

This brings me to the alerts section. How can we let the user know of any abnormal values without having them spend their entire time monitoring using the app?


Complete autonomous monitoring for any abnormal readings

By abnormal, users wanted to know if any monitored environmental condition exceeds or goes below a particular value so that they can plan to take appropriate actions. We can't ask them to keep the app always open and manually monitor the values 24*7 right? That would reduce the effectiveness of the entire solution.

“I feel doubtful whether a piece of software can monitor my environment without any errors”

Roxanne Padilla, Environmental Scientist

Our end users were insecure about letting a software do all the work of them. Rightly so! Because the cost of an error was very high.

“I need to reduce the man hours I'm spending on closely monitoring the environment 24x7.”

Astrid Aguller, Warehouse Manager

Our end user management were either spending a lot on a larger workforce to monitor day & night. If not, their limited workers are having to extend their shifts to closely monitor the environment.

So I designed an 'Alerts' user flow where the user will be able to do the following:

These were some of the iterations I made using hand-drawn sketches and wireframes.

User would be able to add one or more alerts for each sensor. A trigger and response called 'If' and 'Then' will need to be configured. Based on this, the alert will be triggered and the respective users would be notified.

Solution - Mobile version

But how to monitor when the users don't have access to a computer?

This is where I felt a mobile app would be really useful. I pitched this idea to the client and got the go ahead. My plan for the mobile version of the app was to present only the absolutely necessary information. Basically a minimal version of the desktop so that users can be just aware of what's going on.

In the mobile version, users would not be able to setup any new devices. But they can view the existing sites, rooms and the current sensor values. Also, I did not complicate the mobile version with any charts as I found that users were not finding it really necessary to be part of it.

Users would still be able to view and edit/add alerts using the flow shown below.



✅ Positives

  • High User Satisfaction & Task Success

    Our users felt our solution was intuitive compared to a lot of competitor solutions and we instantly noticed a task success of ~92%.

  • Visual Design contributed a lot to the success

    Visual design & UX Content's impact was felt as more than 60% of our users specifically said it was refreshing to see such friendly and cool design in enterprise usage.

  • +33% more increase in work efficiency

    We observed an increase in efficiency as well as increase in cost savings.

“Sensord has given me the freedom to focus on my core job without losing track of what is happening on the safety side.”

Roxanne Padilla, Environmental Scientist

💬 Areas of Improvement

  • We could provide more intelligent insights which could provide meaningful data to the user.
  • Though the product experience was great, we are yet to see a large influx of new customers.
  • Support for more sensors and manual sensor calibration was felt useful by the customers.

“Pressure monitoring is also an important aspect for my field of work and support for that is required.”

Astrid Aguller, Warehouse Manager


Enterprise and Consumer UX are not too different

Consumer UX is deeply ingrained in everyone's mental model. Don't shy away from using some of it's best practices in Enterprise too!

Working with data, 3D Modelling & Blender

Learnt the intricacies of working with data. I also learnt Blender as I used it to create all the 3D models used in this application.

Design Evangelism

Our client was slightly new to the design process. Learnt to drive the process with them and proved the impact of it.