RezOvation, acquired by HomeAway in 2011, is a SaaS that provides property management systems, online reservations, and other services for the hospitality market for B&Bs and inns.
The software was languishing in outdated Siverlight technology, so it was time to move to HTML5. Because the software complex and very dense, responsive views weren’t previously considered.
Due to time and priority constraints, the requirements only focused on visual design:
- Move from Silverlight to HTLM5.
- Maintain existing UX, behaviors, and layouts except where a change is required to support HTML5.
- Design a curated responsive mobile view with a real time calendar, ability to easily view and access upcoming reservations, searching for reservations, and one-touch access to contact guests.
After numerous sessions with the RezO sales and support teams, I had a better understanding of the product and the pain points. I did a massive content audit of the current software, mapping all the information architect that showed all dropdown, forms, and the overall site map.
RezOvation’s main competition is RezNexus, which was already HTML5. All other HomeAway AA products are HTML5, but the teams kept the underlining backbone UI and instead, and continually added features with a new UI. The end result was a mashup of old and new. With this project, we changed all UI, but kept functionality and UX.
Users are innkeepers of B&Bs and inns. They’re a quirky bunch that take their jobs personally and generally hate change, especially those that have used the software for a decade.
Design: Before & after
The new visuals included uncluttered layouts, more logical icons, and a modern UI. Since the dev team was offsite in Ukraine, I created an easy style guide for reference. I also designed a vision for a future dashboard that would match the responsive mobile version.
Due to the complicity the software, it was impossible to become 100% responsively mobile. However, accessing it from any mobile device was crucial for innkeepers and their day-to-day task. With the requirements listed above, I wired and designed a curated, but powerful version for the mobile screen.
The main team included a product manager, a dev manager, and an off-site dev team in Ukraine, and me as the designer. I also spent a lot of time with custom support to really understand the flows that innkeepers go through and their favorites/most hated elements.