The ability to accurately assess driver performance is a crucial aspect of decision making in fleet management and transportation. It’s an important safety measure that, nevertheless, often goes overlooked in fleet management applications.
Bamboo Apps were contacted by a fleet management firm to help design a driver behaviour monitoring software for smartphones. The base functionality of the solution would come from the old application the client already had; but the app would also expand on it and repackage the software into a brand new UI.
The challenge was to deliver a design that would streamline driver performance evaluation and encourage improvement, as well as to enhance the prototype with extra features and an intuitive interface.
Bamboo Apps have designed a mobile prototype for a behaviour tracking app that evaluates driver performance according to several criteria: speeding, braking, phone use, swerving, cornering, and jerking. It does so by monitoring one’s driving style and logging key events during the trip. The data is organised in the form of easy-to-understand analytics and reports.
Individual drivers and whole driver teams receive scores depending on the results of their completed rides. The prototype has elements of gamification, giving users badges and awards for building up their score. There are also separate chats for driver teams, scheduling functionality, and tracking features.
Being an expansion upon the company’s previous solution, the driver behaviour monitoring software prototype was equipped with more advanced functionality for fleet drivers and their managers. So the team was to design two separate interfaces: one for the driver, and one for the admin, and the feature sets differed depending on the interface.
Drivers can create custom profiles, listing general information about themselves and the type of vehicle they drive. The latter is important, since driver scores are calculated differently depending on the vehicle class. Using the profile, drivers can also join teams, schedule trips, access application settings, and send feedback.
Users can view detailed information about their planned and ongoing journeys, as well as access the history of previous trips. The trips can be filtered by a variety of parameters, such as time, distance, ratings, etc.
Fleet drivers can view their scores in the form of rankings and reports. The results of their trips can be filtered by time period, teams, and family mode (more on that later). These are all tied to a system of points: getting good scores rewards drivers with trophies and ranks their teams higher than others.
Drivers can view a predefined set of cards and mini-articles with advice on how to improve their driving technique, as well as the general information about driving rules and regulations.
Drivers can set the application to block the usage and notifications from social media for the duration of the trip to minimise distraction.
In case an accident occurs, the driver is able to log it with a streamlined, partially autofilled form. It includes date, location, odometer, weather, type of road, the picture of the incident, and other parameters.
The prototype has both direct message functionality and team chats for easy instant communication. The users are notified about new messages via regular and push notifications. Aside from those, the app also shows overlay pop-ups to warn drivers about speed limits, road conditions, and so on.
Our design team worked on the project in 2019. While having an existing application to go off of definitely helped in the design process, some major challenges still had to be resolved.
Firstly, Bamboo Apps needed to upgrade the old UI in accordance with modern design sensibilities. The team had to carefully consider how to present both the old and the new features of the app in a way that would prevent clutter and confusion.
Secondly, our specialists had to use their experience in Automotive to devise new ways of making the trips safer and easier to assess. This led to the inclusion of accident logging, social media blocking, pop-ups about changing speed limits and road conditions, and other features designed to increase driver awareness and security.
Finally, we wanted to create a clear incentive for fleet drivers to improve their skills. So we turned to gamification: the scoring system with rewards, badges, and team rankings are designed to make achieving high scores feel more satisfying; on top of that, the competitive angle motivates drivers to perform better than their colleagues, creating a fun engagement loop.
The prototype was successfully designed and presented to the client. It contained all the basic features carried over from the solution that came before it, as well as completely new functionality — all wrapped in a clean and modern UI.