Inside
January 7, 2021

SupplyOn User Community—how users co-design our products

Matching themes: Product Design, UX

The voice of our users counts: In the SupplyOn User Community, users can help shape our products according to their specific needs
The voice of our users counts: In the SupplyOn User Community, users can help shape our products according to their specific needs

Everyone knows this situation: Working with the same software, day by day, taking the same steps over and over again in order to complete our daily tasks. Sometimes questioning, why some things cannot be done any easier or why they are not as we would expect them to be. Wouldn’t it be nice to have someone to discuss these ideas and challenges? And maybe even get to see these ideas being transferred into reality?

Within SupplyOn we can make this dream come true: We offer all our users the opportunity to incorporate their ideas and suggestions into product development.

Focus is on the user

We develop and design our software products for you, our users. It is our goal, to improve collaboration between you and your customers or suppliers as well as to increase transparency for both of you. In order to achieve this goal, both parties must be able to work with the solution efficiently. In other words: It is important to consider the different needs and, above all, the requirements of all those involved.

A lively exchange is necessary with all stakeholders so we can capture a wide variety of relevant input. In addition to the so-called Customer Expert Groups, in which our customers’ central contact persons exchange ideas with us and with one another, we have established the SupplyOn User Community for this exact purpose. Within the community, every user of our software has the same chance to provide feedback and ideas of their own, or to get into discussion with one another. It doesn’t matter if a user works for a buy- or sell-side company, if she/he is part of a large enterprise or a smaller family owned businessall voices are being treated equally important within the community.

Open discussions as core principal

Users have a wide variety of interests and also diverse expectations. First of all, we therefore try to clarify in a short conversation with interested users what kind of topics exactly they are interested in and what value they would like to pull out of their community participation.

It is important to also learn about expectations related with the community itself and its events. This way, we can come up with relevant activities for the right target group. After all, all members shall gain value in their participation.

Joining the SupplyOn User Community is simple and straightforward
Joining the SupplyOn User Community is simple and straightforward

Next to offering an exchange with SupplyOn colleagues, we support discussions amongst community members as well. We will take care of matching all interests with relevant community activities.

When being part of the community, the process is actually always the same: We occasionally request participation in planned activities based on your beforehand discussed areas of interest. Activities range from interviews, moderated discussion rounds with other community members or maybe even pre-tests of new product concepts we already have created. Last but not least, we also offer beta testing of finished new products in a pre-release phase from time to time.

When announcing these activities we also add information about timing and expected effort (which is usually not more than 1 hour). Each community member then may decide individually if this matches with all her other regular responsibilities at this time. We understand your time is precious and sometimes it is just not possible to take this kind of extra mile.

Having participated in a series of discussions related to a new Logistics & Finance product, I really felt that my input was valued and considered in the product development. And it was great to be amongst the first users when the final product was released.

Denis Curtin, Tripod Technology

Create meaningful solutions together

Regardless of which activity you participate in, we will, with your consent, bundle all responses and information anonymously to incorporate all findings within our ongoing product design and development process.

Now how does this work? Initially we have an idea and rough concept in mind, that we would like to follow so we can create value for our users. Along the so-called user-centered design process (which puts the user in the middle of all development) we continuously refine and supplement this list of requirements based on our communities’ feedback.

At some point of time the plans and discussions finally come to life.

Now it’s getting exciting: Our community members may be amongst the first users to work with the new development in a first release version with all its new options and features in a so-called beta phase. Within that period, additional feedback based on then actual usage can be discussed and taken into consideration for even more improvements.  

Each opinion matters

The community thus offers all our users the opportunity to help shape the products they and other users will work with in the future according to their own needs and requirements. This way they directly benefit from their contribution.

For each individual, her or his contribution made may seem small or not relevant. But many pieces of a puzzle put together the right way create a coherent picture. And that’s exactly what we intend to achieve within the community: Added value for everyone involved.

Community members benefit in a variety of ways

Interested?
Join our community here: SupplyOn User Community

I’m looking forward to shaping our solutions with you!

Karen Loewe

UX Expert

For me as UX expert at SupplyOn, the intensive exchange with our users is extremely important. I’m always keen on seeing how our users actually use our products in their everyday work. My scope of work ranges from user interviews and usability tests to minor optimizations for existing products as well as complete redesigns. True to the motto "don't make me think", I strive to create the easiest and most intuitive usability possible for our users.

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