Bidding Generator


Brief: A tool that helps general contractors forming bidding proposal documents.

Field: Saas, Enterprise Solution

Timeline: 2 months | 2020



01 Research

Understanding the process & Uncovering user needs

I worked for DDB contracting for their specific need t update the bidding generator. The old bidding generator was built in 2001, it is a software that users can input all the needed information for generating bidding proposal PDF.

It can no longer satisify the company’s needs as I was told. I did user interview with 3 users to figure out:

  1. what’s the user flow like?
  2. what the problems are using the old software?
  3. what new features are expected?

Below are some conversation highlights that helped me a lot during my process of identifying needs & listing new features.

Getting the primary pain points of users helped me listing the new features for the new products. The old software basically only have one feature: Creating biddings, while that’s the core feature, lacking other important features like “Store Draft” caused a lot of pain for users. The old “Windows XP” UI also casued unpleasant user experience.





02 User Flow

Coming up with viable solutions

Integrating the new features into the user flow prepares me wireframing. I structured the user flow based on the research. Also it was time to think about how to properly arrange features into different pages, so I marked different pages next to the features.





03 Design Solutions

Main interface & Side Navigation

List View

To design a straight solution for data storage I created this list view for all the bidding.

  1. Users can filter by category on the top right corner,
  2. Sort tab on the left for “Recently Changed”, “ID” and “Client Name”,
  3. The new biddings generated from Sage that has not been used it will be marked “New” in red,
  4. Users can click on the “Edit” button to group edit biddings, either delete them or mark them in different status.

Search

It is important to be able to search with multiple pramaters since there are hundreds of biddings in the system. I designed a search system which allow users to search direct through ID (#123), Bidding title (t: title), client (c: client name), PM (pm: pm name).




Clear Sub Navigation

From my experience with NYU IT when I was designing another construction management platform, it is important for Saas platforms to indicate users “Where they are” with multiple flows they are going through.

When a user enter a specific bidding they can see all the sections listed on the side and they can jump to a certain section on the page instead of having to scroll to find a certain section; The complete section will mark with a green check mark on the side.



Project General & Scope of Work


Project General

All the client information, project general information is input from Procore, if anything changes on Procore it will be updated here. But my client brought up that there are 3 parameters they would like to have project managers manually add. Also, showing the “Grand Total” of the project is very helpful.


Scope of Work

The most important thing to understand this part is to sort out the structure of the scope of work. Every line is under a work item, items can be included in a group. Talking to my client about automation is of vital importance. In this part, I listed out the structure and thought about problems dynamically.


Exclusions & Clarifications




Adding Preview Window

Exclusions and Alternates are paragraphs consist of few small items. Compare to Scope of Work, I added a preview window to indicate the shape of the generated paragraph.