Building an intuitive user interface for the supply chain ecosystem

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At its heart, TradeLens Core aims to improve visibility of vital shipment data then deploy that data with speed and security, facilitating greater collaboration between shippers and their logistics partners. But it’s ultimately features like TradeLens Shipment Manager which makes this data readily accessible and puts it at your fingertips. It is the user interface which allows you to visualize your shipments, consignments and transportation equipment.

As a member of the design team for Shipment Manager, how you engage within the industry and with our product is at the center of every decision we make. Practically speaking, this means focusing our continuous iterative approach to interface updates, with more features and information available through the Shipment Manager — working to streamline search, improve event notifications, and better facilitate exception management.

Intuitive end-to-end design

Over the past several months, we’ve been challenging ourselves to really reimagine the Shipment Manager landing page to bring you access to a true operations hub from the moment you log in. The ability to run queries in TradeLens via the Shipment Manager and the option to toggle between card stack and table views within the UI, for example, came to us through your feedback.

The design is guided by this reality: it has to intuitively teach each user how to use the product. Shipment Manager is a turnkey solution — from shipping, to consignment, to container data.

Being able to see both planned and estimated times for key events (be they arrivals, departures, transhipments, or another major collaboration) is a necessary feature.

We have found that companies both large and small benefit from being able to pop into the UI and do a quick search of their shipment data, right from the landing page, preferably with common or recently useful searches already queued up.

The UI algorithm lets you easily identify when those planned and estimated dates are too far apart, allowing you to analyze those differences and facilitate your own exception management procedure.

Rethinking user interface functionality 

Very few other platforms or ecosystems have access to the vast amounts of event data we do, which means TradeLens can be a uniquely streamlined, one-stop shop for your most up-to-date shipment information. It’s why we continue to release new features based on your experience and ours.

Coming soon in the current progress view will be quick queries tied to the search bar on the landing page. Digging through tens of thousands or even simply hundreds of shipments to determine arrival and departure dates or which shipments are delayed or anticipating delays, is simply unrealistic. In addition to quick queries, will be advanced search options for more granular refinement through more considered and thorough taxonomy-based filters.

Helping you identify and react to unexpected events via thoughtful exception management is one of the primary tasks of our event tracking and notification design in the UI. Increasing visibility by placing planned and estimated times side by side is one facet of that work, helping to track assets where those two dates are very far apart — a reliable metric for when a sudden change might require immediate attention.

Our design group has a breadth of expertise to draw from regarding which events may have priority over others, working in conjunction with various TradeLens departments that collaborate directly with customers and partners. The goal is to always improve the system’s organization of this material into more tangible and usable data for you.

Designed for growth

With the capabilities of TradeLens and the sheer volume of information it manages in one platform, means that its design solutions and user interface have to be unique — inspired by, yet distinct from, the industry norms for the typical track-and-trace platform. With your feedback and our agile design process, it will continue to grow and scale with your business to meet the diversity of the industry and challenges ahead.

It’s a new model with new design challenges, but also new opportunities that we are meeting in direct dialogue with you every day.

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