‘Simple, democratically designed UX is the glue for our users’

[Edit Notes: This blog is part of our series on Indian Democratic Design, a uniquely Indian approach to designing powerfully simple, scalable, well-crafted, and affordable solutions that make our customers self-reliant. In this piece, Bharat Balasubramaniam, director of design at Freshworks, talks about how great user experience built on these principles can enhance users’ productivity and efficiency. To learn more about Indian Democratic Design go here.]

Software is the lifeblood of businesses across the world today. And user experience is at the heart of software. Even as we address more sophisticated and complex problems, we are constantly making our software simple and easy to use. “Great user experience can make things better. It speeds up an otherwise slow day for someone whose job is to quickly and efficiently solve problems for customers,” says Bharat Balasubramaniam, Director of Design at Freshworks.

An example of building software with the democratic design principle of Simplicity is core to the Mint user interface we developed for our helpdesk tool, Freshdesk. When we were looking to make the dashboard simpler than the previous version, we conducted one-on-one interviews with customer support execs and captured all their feedback.

We asked them about their dashboard usage, what tickets they would like prioritized, how the dashboard should look graphically, how the data shown can help them do their job better—and they opened up to us with honest opinions and great expectations. With this real-world feedback from actual users, we came up with a new interface that we called Mint. “Melding the design part with SaaS functionality for ever-enhancing simplicity is what keeps us excited and going,” says Balasubramaniam.

It breathed fresh air into the working lives of our users. They just loved the enhanced simplicity of the UI. The hours saved by using the new, de-cluttered screen could be put to better use. And we did this without taking away the rich functionality of our software, thanks to the creativity of our team and the suggestions of our users. “A simple, democratically designed user experience is the glue that keeps our users in love,” says Balasubramaniam. 

We do keep it powerfully simple.