A dream freelance project. Read how I helped the team at Herdvision turn an amazing peice of software into an amazing product.

Project summary

HerdVision came to me with an interesting challenge. They had an amazing product, plenty of investment, even some real world users. But there had been no consideration given to user experience - ever! Usually, I'd be a little reluctant when it comes to what seems like a reskinning exercise but I really thought I could help here so got stuck in - it really turned out to be much more than that.

HerdVision uses 3D imaging cameras to monitor the health of cows for dairy farmers. It's being used in farms all over the world by companies such as Arla. Their hardware is installed above a gate where a cow passes under and is given a score based on a number of markers. They had developed a dashboard and native mobile app for farmers to use and therefore act on any poor scores.

On this project I was working alone on design, alongside a number of developers who had built a working dashboard and native app. The challenge was to design a platform where farmers could simply track their cattle's health - whilst maintaining a pleasing aesthetic. Ultimately positioning this brand as a major player in agricultural tech.

Research played a huge part on this project, mainly from a user persona angle. Understanding a farmer's expectations and requirements was key and an industry that was very much alien to me. I spoke to a number of clients, researched competitors and gathered a set of project requirements.

One of the biggest challenges for me was the existing brand. Colour contrasts didn't meet accesibility standards, typefaces didn't represent the brand correctly and there was an unncessary usage of colour within the logo - making it difficult to use across different applications. There was a tradeoff required here where to build this platform effectively, a rebrand was required. Budget requirements meant that outsourcing to a design agency was off the cards so I had to draw on my expertise on brand guidelines and overall design systems to work through this individually. Coming from a startup background, this was perfectly normal. It wasn't necessarily a product problem but was a cog that had to be turning to have the entire experience fit together the way I envisioned it.

The project was a huge success and feedback from real world usage has been brilliant. Both the dashboard and the native app are being used daily by farmers across the world and the marketing site is driving a huge amount of interest. HerdVision is positioned excellently to succeed in a competitive market where others haven't invested in design.