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Toumi (Chef App)

Project Overview

I was an Assistant Cook at a senior-citizen NPO program that cooks healthy Japanese meals for seniors age 65+ in San Francisco. 

 

I created an on-boarding guide for newly hired chefs and later developed a concept app for my school project at UC Berkeley Ext.

PURPOSE: Converting a lean proof of concept in to a mobile app

 

TIMELINE: 9 Weeks

 

MY ROLE: UX Designer, UI/Visual Designer, and Chef

 

TOOLS: Sketch, Trello, Invision

 

METHODOLOGY: User Research, User Testing

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PROBLEM STATEMENT

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WORKING ENVIRONMENT

Initially, when I first started the job, there was no instruction manual on how food was prepared or a kitchen schedule.

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MY NOTES

The kitchen staff mainly spoke Japanese, along with a few volunteers. I had to learn by observing and taking notes every day.

CONSEQUENCES

Unfortunately, my co-worker (who was hired at the same time as me) was fired because he couldn’t keep up with the pace, despite doing a good job.

After a month, we hired someone new. Despite being an excellent cook & worker, he was also struggling because there were only verbal instructions and still no written schedule to follow.

BUSINESS PAIN POINTS

FOR CHEFS:

  • The high turnover rate for kitchen staff

  • Chef burn-out, working overtime

  • No formal training or onboarding process

  • No recipe guide

  • Japanese speaking working environment

  • Mostly hiring staff with no experience

FOR MANAGEMENT:

  • Overworked, overseeing the entire operation

  • Unable to increase low wages for kitchen staff. This is controlled by a different department

HOW TO SOLVE THE PROBLEM:

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BUSINESS GOALS:

  • Easy-to-understand onboarding for new staff

  • Create a cheap, but efficient recipe and schedule guide for the chef to learn quickly

  • Create a tool that can be used by all staff members and the managers to keep track of delegating tasks and inventory management

  • Fewer mistakes, happier people

LEAN PROOF OF CONCEPT:

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INITIAL RESULTS:

Sharing my Trello board with Co-workers:

  • The pace of the kitchen went a lot faster. My co-worker took the time to review my notes before starting our shift. I got a lot of “thank yous!” 

  • The head chef decided to print out her recipe guide to share with the team. 

  • Management took the Trello board seriously and decided to start creating an official manual.

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But wait...there's more

PROJECT CASE STUDY:

CREATING A CHEF APP

WHY WOULD AN APP HELP?

 

Weaknesses of Trello

  • Doesn’t show the entire month’s menu

  • Trello boards for the weekly schedule have to be manually updated by the drag & drop system

  • There’s no easy-to-view schedule/timeline of all the tasks you need to do for the day

 

Other benefits include:

  • Easy view of the chef’s schedule & their duties

  • Language (Japanese) translations

  • Notification reminders of when time-sensitive tasks need to be done

PERSONA CASE

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USER FLOW (IN THE KITCHEN)

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USER RESEARCH INSIGHTS

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“I would never be on my phone to use [notifications] as a reminder. It’s all about remembering it yourself”

— User

Feedback:

  1. Take what makes Trello works and incorporate it into the app.

  2. Align the staff together in completing the same goal

 

PROTOTYPING & USABILITY TESTING

Click on the image to magnify 

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LOW-FIDELITY 

USER INSIGHT:

(Recipe Page) From most important to least important:

  1. Photo of dish

  2. Directions

  3. Ingredients

  4. Recipe

  5. Delivery

  6. How to plate

Click on the image to magnify 

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HI-FIDELITY (Ver.1)

“The printing [icon] seems like something you would want to disclose...it may be confidential.”

— User

  • Both chefs and managers keep track of inventory. There is already a separate software system (such as Quickbooks, etc.) for tracking inventory and supplier information.

  • All users indicate that the Kitchen Schedule is the most important.

FINAL HI-FIDELITY DESIGN

HOME PAGE

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SCHEDULE PAGE

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RECIPE PAGE

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ALL RECIPES

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ALL ITERATIONS

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DESIGN SYSTEM

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FINAL TAKEAWAY

The kitchen information is still relevant and it’s an important onboarding process. Users access the kitchen information with ease before/after their shift, without risking contamination issues.  

 

The app creates valuable alignment with all staff, without the overburden of features. 

 

Saves management training time and money.