Best known for AutoCAD® loved by architects, designers, and engineers everywhere, Autodesk is one of the world’s most respected software companies, serving diverse markets in Asia, Europe, US, and Africa.
Speaking with consumers from all over requires an incredible amount of translation work. The core localisation team—Autodesk’s in-house team of language experts—takes charge of this herculean task, coordinating not only with internal staff but also third-party collaborators from around the globe.
Needless to say, keeping track of the large volume of data exchanged daily can be difficult and confusing—and unfortunately, processes at the time did not make it any easier, either. Information was exchanged, accessed, and stored in different software types, and this varied from vendor to vendor. Coordination was cumbersome, and onboarding new vendors proved equally tedious and time-consuming.
The situation was complicated, but it didn’t have to be. To transform Autodesk, we worked out a solution that was simple, intuitive, and centred around the most important piece of the process—people.
We held a five-day design sprint with core team members to identify needs and pain points. We mapped and analysed key parts of the workflow—how translations were submitted, certified, and audited—and drilled down four issues: there was too much manual input, tasks that could be automated were not; there was no central hub for information as well as no data integrity.
We had two goals: one, to improve core team and vendor productivity and two, to improve vendors’ experience working with Autodesk. Both goals came with clearly measurable outcomes—improving productivity meant decreasing the time needed to complete tasks, while improving the work experience meant positive feedback from happier third-party providers.
At the end of it, we created a solution that consolidated and prioritised the functions most needed by users in one easy-to-use platform. Users could rely on it to send notifications when an action is required—to vendors, for example, if a new translation project needed to start, or to Autodesk, if translations needed auditing.
Instead of manually transferring information from one programme to another, information could be keyed in directly and securely—cutting down on actions needed by this step. The platform also maintains data integrity by limiting access to a few key personnel.
Lastly—and quite importantly, as this is what users interact with every day—we designed the platform with an interface so user-friendly and intuitive, it requires almost no onboarding to get started.
We tested the new system with the core team as well as external vendors who Skyped in from China and Europe. All users vouched for the intuitive usability—they found they could complete their tasks with newfound vitality and speed.
Project goals were met and measured—productivity increased by 30%, while vendor satisfaction increased by 40%. With rave reviews from team leads ringing in our ears, Autodesk vividly demonstrates the power of putting people and their needs first.