This concluded the entire research stage that was basically the very core of the new product. We understood who our users were and what they needed and wanted and also explored the business goals and how the product can help to satisfy both the users and the company. Based on that evaluation, the complete service architecture and wireframes were created.
Only now, after coming a long way, did we arrive at the most exciting stage of the project: user interface design.
Design: Data-rich Functionality Filled with Love
When it came to the design of the new ITTI Digital core banking solution, the biggest challenge was to step outside of the boring, gray tableview design into something more appealing. A colorful and fresh solution could provide a clear difference by becoming emotionally engaging.
This was one of the most creative and excitement-charged stages of the whole ITTI Digital project. The entire UXDA team was involved during the in-house design challenge.
Introduction: Probably the Best Core Banking Solution Ever Created
It took a week of intense creative work to get to the key design concept─the best possible for the ITTI Digital project.
The design concept presentation was a hugely anticipated and emotional step─both for us and for ITTI Digital. We had been working very hard on the research and engineering phases while creating the core of the solution. Now, it was finally time for ITTI Digital to meet their new world-class product that had already changed their business through the design process.
The Key Design Concept presentation turned out to be a truly remarkable moment. ITTI Digital team members couldn't hide their emotions of joy and delight as they admitted that they feel thrilled and the ITTI Digital design concept exceeded their expectations!
We've guided you through the whole process, and now it's time to review the results. This is the ready-made design and architecture based on the research that, as of today, is being developed by the ITTI Digital IT team and soon will be available worldwide for any bank to purchase!
Login: Start the Day off Right
We wanted to provide users with a service that would make their tasks quick and easy to implement, but their motivation and inspiration were also very important to us.
We focused carefully on the login screen, as that's the first thing greeting an employee in the morning. We wanted to provide an inspiring, calming and focused tone for the day ahead.
We did that by displaying a remarkable view of nature in the background of the screen, as well as a quote by a successful, well-known person. Every time the employee assesses the login screen, he/she is greeted by a different picture and quote to instill a peaceful mood. The login is quick, as the solution remembers the employee's user name, and only the password needs to be entered.
The Main Workspace: Wise Assistant for Daily Tasks
We made a flat, clean and light dashboard design for bank employees so it would stand out from the boring gray screens most employees are accustomed to. We wanted to refresh the common formality in banks, replacing it with an emotionally uplifting environment.
In the example below, our user is a Customer Service Specialist, who works at a branch with clients daily. As noted before, there are different kinds of architectures according to the employee’s position and information required to accomplish their daily tasks.
Features of the main workspace:
- On the left side, there is a client validation function and chat; these two blocks are accessible constantly, even when the user is navigating to a different page;
- In the middle part, there is a block of all user tasks;
- On the right side is the schedule;
- At the bottom, the productivity summary is displayed.
To see a more detailed view, the user can expand the three blocks of tasks, schedule and productivity.
The workspace addresses a huge part of all the needs that employees indicated throughout the interviews. Here's a short overview of the solutions we created to reduce employees’ pain points and stress and make their everyday lives much simpler and more enjoyable.
It was crucial to make the solution intuitive and understandable, so the users would not need to spend two months learning it. We concentrated only on those functions─ the ITTI Digital user personas really needed for their duties.
Goals Made Fun: Gamification for Motivation
ITTI Digital had the courage to admit that their old banking solution was frustrating employees and stressing them out. In six months, we turned that around and designed something pleasant and enjoyable. We wanted to engage and motivate employees to reach their goals in the most effective way by addressing the users’ needs for fun, entertainment and reward.
We used gaming elements to inspire employees to reach their sales goals while, at the same time, keeping them informed about the progress they were making. Thus, we are using digital technologies to help employees reach their business goals in the most affordable way.
Every month, the employee embarks a journey toward his/her sales goal. To attain the superior “Sales Guru” badge, the user must unlock four previous badges by selling the bank’s products. To help them with that, we included small hints in each product group.
During the productivity section, the user also reviews his personal task progress: how many of them are finished on time. Here, statistical information is combined with useful insights about the tasks that the employee is most often delaying.
We have integrated a block that displays the overall client satisfaction. Unfortunately, this information that is crucial for employee self-evaluation and service quality is almost always hidden from them.
We also wanted that employees would feel appreciated by their workplace. That's why we complemented the solution with inspiring illustrations that would celebrate their successes and motivate them towards reaching higher goals. This was one of the many little details we included in the solution to ensure positive emotions for the employees, adding a sense of meaning and significance to their everyday duties.
Designed for Focus and Joy
When it comes to the design, a blue color dominates. It cultivates a feeling of calmness and serenity, which is critical for employees of a bank who have a huge responsibility on their shoulders.
It is important to note that, since ITTI Digital is a vendor that would provide this solution to different kinds of banks utilizing their own colors and brand identity, the appearance of the solution can be customized.
In the background, we have displayed a picture of mountains, which provides a relaxing appearance while keeping employees attentive. Mountains bring a feeling of open space and freedom, which is often sorely missing in the tall glass buildings of many banks. We wanted to bring joy to users’ daily lives, so we made personalization available, providing an option to change the background picture.
The Fight for a Better Future Begins
Halfway through the project, the ITTI Digital team admitted:
We understand that we should change not only our product but the whole mindset as a company, how we act like a business. Everybody in the team has started to think from the users’ perspective. It's not about the functionality. The value is not the technical features but the way a product makes people feel. Cultural change is happening.
This has been one of the most rewarding moments the UXDA team has experienced. You see, many believe that the design is about packaging─a beautiful picture and color─but, in fact, the ITTI Digital case is living proof that user-centered Design thinking is able to provide exceptional value for the whole business.
UXDA has always stated that our mission is to humanize the complex financial world, making it closer to the real end users─the people, and the way to achieve that is not by creating a pretty design. It's about shifting the mindset from profits and features toward a perspective focused on creating valuable experiences. That's exactly what ITTI Digital experienced and acknowledged during their collaboration with UXDA. This led them to integrate an experience-oriented philosophy into their inner business culture.
They admitted that, at the beginning of the project, the team felt skeptical of the possibility of combining back-office functionality and security measures with user centricity and delightful design.
During the project, ITTI Digital learned to make users their main priority, and their perception changed dramatically. It felt like they had finally opened their eyes to what has always been right in front of them─their users. They learned to listen to the users and focus on understanding their needs, expectations and, most importantly, their pains and struggles that the current solution was constantly causing.
Throughout this process, their skepticism was overridden by inspiration, insights and revelations they had never even expected to encounter. Observing the behavior of the team, they changed and became more and more involved in the process and oriented on the best possible result they could provide for the users. It was gratifying to guide them through every stage, constantly uncovering new ideas and insights on how to improve the solution even more.
ITTI Digital admitted:
The end result over-delivered on our expectations, not only because it proved the possibility to combine the complex functionality with user centricity in an enjoyable, beautiful and delightful design, but also because we became live witnesses of the huge mindset shift a user-centered thinking creates in our organization.
Of course, it took great courage to embark on this challenging journey. Most banks reveal they are very afraid of making such a huge and revolutionary shift, changing a structure that has been working for decades, but ITTI Digital is living proof that it's 100% worth it. And we are really proud of them!
Together with ITTI Digital, we have developed a never-before-seen banking back-office solution that will surely become a global game changer in the industry.
Most importantly, however, we have helped a huge financial company shift their inner mindset toward users and their needs, taking a revolutionary step toward humanizing the financial industry.
If we changed the mindset of our company while developing this core solution, then I believe the banking employee who will use this product will change his/her mindset too, and as a result this shift will change how the clients perceive their bank. I think this is a great start to do a real digital transformation.
Hector Ojeda, ITTI Digital Innovation Manager
About the author
Inese Novikova is a UX architect and consultant at UXDA who run the ITTI Digital project. She has remarkable experience in the industry of finance─a Bachelor's degree in Business Management and a Master's degree in Finance. For more than five years, she worked in the banking industry as a central banking operations division senior specialist and trade finance documentary operations specialist, facing the banking back-office solution daily. She always believed it's possible to reinvent the solution, improving the everyday lives of banking employees, as well as client service.