Honeywell Products Win Design Awards from Red Dot and iF Design

Honeywell Products Win Design Awards from Red Dot and iF Design

How Experience-Focused Design Drives Value for Customers 

When navigating all of the technologies we come into contact with every day, we likely don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how these products were designed, or even the product features. What often stands out is the experience we have when using the product.

As a forward-thinking company with a long history of design innovation, Honeywell understands this. The user experience and experience-focused design are key considerations Honeywell takes into account when creating new products and solutions. The Honeywell User Experience (HUE) team of nearly 70 experience designers around the world for Industrial Automation (SPS) has helped create user-focused solutions for the past 10 years.

Award-Winning Experience Design Focus

This dedicated focus on experience design has placed the company in the design spotlight. Since 2017, Honeywell has received 51 international design awards for its safety and productivity solutions. In 2022, iF Design ranked Honeywell #2 out of more than 500 companies on the iF World Design Index in the “industry” category; rankings on this index are based on the number of design awards won from the organization over the last five years.

This year, the company is proud to have seven SPS products receive recognition from two well-renowned organizations, Red Dot and iF Design. Products selected to win Red Dot Product Design Awards are judged for their innovation, functionality and longevity by a jury of experts. The iF Design Awards honor achievements in product, packaging, communication and service design, architecture as well as professional concept, user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design. Honeywell SPS’s 2022 award-winning solutions include:

-        The CT30XP Mobile Computer (Red Dot and iF Design winners), an intuitive device with a sleek and modern feel that is easy to learn to use. The HUE design process resulted in one-piece device construction instead of two-piece, allowing the product to be smaller, lighter and pocketable for users in healthcare and soft-goods retail. 

-        The H700 Safety Harness (Red Dot and iF Design winners), a fall protection device with patented one-step trauma relief mechanism. The HUE design team incorporated “voice of the customer” feedback and user experience tests of material breathability and thermal conductivity into the design of the product to help ensure the harness not only kept workers safe but also comfortable and productive when working at great heights.

-        The BW Pod (Red Dot winner), a gas detector enclosure enabling workers to assess gas exposure risk without damaging their detectors. Through the HUE design and testing process, the team discovered the need for devices that could go into deeper wells and withstand harsher conditions. The resulting technology is rugged enough to handle these environments and helps save workers time on pre-entry checks.  

-        The EDA5S Handheld Computer (Red Dot winner), a device for the retail sector that leverages a scan engine powerful enough for fast barcode reading in the field. The HUE design process resulted in a smaller battery so the device could be slimmer and easier to carry for an entire retail shift.

-        The Vertex Compliance Toxic Gas Monitoring System (iF Design winner), a technology that detects ultrasensitive gases in high-tech operations, such as semiconductor foundries, to help companies protect their employees and assets.

-        Transmission Risk Air Monitor (iF Design winner), a device using proprietary technology to measure carbon dioxide levels in an indoor area, like a classroom, and alerts the user when conditions are present that may increase the risk of potential exposure to airborne virus transmission.

-        Genesis XP Flexible Presentation Scanner (iF Design winner), a hands-free scanner for today’s retail world that offers faster scanning speed and a larger scanning area for increased business productivity and a smooth payment experience at the point-of-sale.

How Honeywell Excels at Experience Design: the HUE Process

HUE’s process is holistic, considering physical, digital, human and contextual elements when designing products and digital solutions. HUE creates value by not only understanding the needs of users, but also customers, installers, maintainers, channel partners and employees to design intuitive, desirable and differentiated end-to-end experiences. For example, when designing a product for healthcare, HUE incorporates the needs of the nurses who use it, the health system that owns it, the IT team who helps implement it, etc. “The end goal is to create products that solve problems in the right way for users,” says Pete Holdcroft, Honeywell’s Director of User Experience Design. 

The team uses insights from key customers, deep domain knowledge, comprehensive understanding of technologies and a co-design approach with users from start to finish. HUE weighs product ideas using various metrics including usability, desirability and innovation, placing emphasis on solutions that use new ideas, methods and paradigms to meet market needs.

Over a time period ranging from six months to two years, depending on the project, HUE follows an iterative four-step process that includes discovery, design, delivery and deployment. As part of the process, design teams develop customer journey maps to better understand the pain points of end users. They formulate hypotheses, create measurable experience goals and solicit feedback on different design concepts and prototypes. They also conduct collaborative workshops to dive deeper into customer needs and how to address them.

And the team’s involvement does not end after a product is released: HUE incorporates continual feedback on product use and maintenance to inform future solutions.

Experience Design in Action: CT30XP Example  

When designing the CT30XP, Honeywell’s smallest and lightest mobile computer to date, the team understood and were up for the challenge of fitting all of the functionality clinicians and retail workers need into a small package that would be light enough to comfortably carry and durable enough to withstand frequent sanitizing and dropping. It also needed a large, modern-looking screen and intuitive design that would be easy to learn to use by a young workforce accustomed to being on their personal phones.

The multidisciplinary team of engineers, marketing and product management professionals and experience designers assembled to review research on customer needs and key requirements. They used “observational voice of the customer,” or insights from stakeholders gained from years of observing them in their roles, as well as personas of retail sales associates and nurses to ensure designs would help these users meet their biggest day-to-day challenges.

From six initial designs, the group narrowed down the options that would work best in the healthcare and retail environments. They reviewed where to place the speaker for optimal function and incorporated feedback on the depth of the scanning element; the end result has the scanner bump out just enough so it is a comfortable spot to place your index finger. Given that women represent 89% of all registered nurses1 and nearly 57% of all retail workers2, it was important to make the mobile computer optimal for the size of women’s hands.

The final CT30XP device is even further customized for healthcare and retail use. For example, the retail version includes a hand strap feature so that associates can wear the device and the healthcare version uses a different color (white and blue) to align with the aesthetics of the hospital setting. “The key to success for this project was having all the right stakeholders on board from the beginning to offer their insight and feedback,” says Joanna Kucko, Senior Industrial Designer for HUE. “We were thoughtful in designing this solution for the industry and the specific needs of healthcare and retail end-users.”    

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