UX Design
Case Study
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UX Design

Oil Refinery SaaS

This was a 18-month journey of how our team changed an outdated, unhelpful and unfriendly system into a valuable and easy to use tool.

To comply with my non-disclosure agreement, I have omitted and obfuscated confidential information in this case study.
All information in this case study is my own and does not necessarily reflect the views of the team.


The company had a system that did its job of collecting the immense amount of real-time data from all the tanks and gauges in the plant very well but they had a very rudimentary way of displaying information, unfriendly interfaces, complex task flows with too many steps that made the use and management of information difficult and confuse, there was no easy way to create reports and the alarms system could not be customized.

Business Objectives

Design a system that is easy to use, that provides relevant and timely information to make important decisions and prevent accidents.


  • 1. Give Operators a Global view of the plant in a clear, easy-to-understand and quick-to-see way.
  • 2. Give to management up-to-date information from the KPI's throughout the plant in order to make long-term strategic decisions.

My Role

As the sole designer on a 16-member product team, I was responsible for the entire design process from initial discovery all the way to the current release. I assisted our PM in writing the requirements, running discovery and usability research, as well as creating wireframes and prototypes. I also worked closely with the Engineering team to develop feasible solutions to the problems we had with our processing capabilities.

UX Design Process

I conducted remote interviews with users to learn about their problems with the current system and to understand what goals they needed to reach with the system.

During the UX process it became increasingly clear that they needed at least three different approaches to data visualization for each user profile and also ways to use that data tailored to each role.

I proposed using three different types of dashboard: Operative for Operators, Strategic for Managers and Analytical for Finance/Human Resources so we could communicate the right data sets to the right people.

The client wanted the interface to be an infographic with all the tanks showing their capacity in real time as well as all the related data, which was crazy because of the amount of data and processing that had to be shown in screen.

Convince the client that the best idea at the UX and performance level was to use dashboards was the most challenging issue to us because they was determined to use a "live" infographic, but in the end we did it.

I used the UX Artifacts that best fit the needs of the project, the users and the tasks to be completed, this allowed us to have a very clear picture when working on the wireframes and the prototypes.

We carry out an initial user test of the prototypes (Invision & HTML/CSS without code) and with the results and observations we iterate until we have all the task flows and features fully approved.

My featured contribution

Different approaches to data visualization

Some stakeholders did not see the value or the need for my idea of having different dashboard approaches, they prefer a single dashboard with all information for all users, then I take an html framework and I made the html prototypes to show them the difference and value of have different dashoards: Operative, Management & Finance.

At the end of the day everyone agreed to use different dashboards :-)

Surveys were carried out among users to measure the degree of satisfaction with the new system, and most agreed that the new system was much simpler to use, more useful and provided valuable information for decision-making in the different areas.

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