frog helped Lawson overhaul their premiere resource planning software to make it easier for their clients to manage their complex businesses.
Lawson Software is a global enterprise resource planning (ERP) software company that helps companies manage their businesses more effectively. Ease of use is paramount. In late 2005, the company asked frog to develop a fresh user experience for its flagship application, “M3,” a product targeted at manufacturing and distribution companies. The result was the ground breaking Lawson M3 Smart Client
The challenge for the project was to optimize the application for a broad range of tasks while also creating an easy-to-use interface. After analyzing a variety of end-user scenarios, we engineered the application to include a “workspace canvas”—a primary desktop that can host widgets addressing both peripheral and core user tasks, such as search and system messaging. We also replaced the traditional single-window interface with stringed and miniaturized windows, making it much easier to comprehend and complete complex work flows.
The new program brings up in-context data as it becomes relevant to the user. Smart Client even remembers past applications, making them easy to access later on.
At every turn, we made it possible for users to effortlessly customize their workspace and create a system that’s right for them. Content and layout can be adjusted with intuitive drag-and-drop actions, and successful templates can be shared with others. There are also options for color change, image replacement, and data structure.
Instead of using a “thin client” approach, also known as a Web client that delivers HTML or Java applets to the screen, frog built a system for the Lawson M3 Smart Client that deploys 8–10 megabytes of software to the desktop upon installation. This give the user more stability and access. Also, system refreshes happen automatically and invisibly, minimizing maintenance costs and ensuring that updates and changes are deployed to the user community in a timely and effective manner.
Unlike its predecessors, Smart Client moves users to the center, putting the right tools and resources onscreen to aid in productivity. In doing so, Lawson is able to boost not only the commercial success of its clients, but to dramatically improve the satisfaction of their users.