UI/UX and user advocacy for an AI-based, modular irrigation system and smart farming solution
Netafim is the global leader in precision irrigation for a sustainable future. With 29 subsidiaries and 17 manufacturing plants worldwide, Netafim delivers innovative, tailor-made irrigation and fertigation solutions to millions of farmers, allowing smallholders to large-scale agricultural producers, in over 110 countries to grow more with less. Founded in 1965, Netafim pioneered the drip revolution, creating a paradigm shift toward precision irrigation. Today, specializing in end-to-end solutions from the water source to the root zone, Netafim delivers turnkey irrigation and greenhouse projects, supported by engineering, project management and financing services. Netafim is also leading the way in digital farming, integrating real-time monitoring, analysis and automated control into one state-of-the-art system
As a technology-forward company, Netafim was among the first in the agriculture industry to recognize the importance of IoT and the connected world. The company understood that connectivity is poised to transform every piece of data, every smart model, and even decision-making processes. Irrigation systems – which have had some level of automation for decades now – could now use modern technology to revolutionize farming.
To achieve that goal, Netafim began an ambitious new project – designing the first irrigation system with a brain. This system named NetBeatTM, a first of its kind, all-in-one digital farming platform (monitoring, control and analysis).
NetBeatTM is an incredibly sophisticated system, envisioned to assume responsibility for every workflow a modern farmer might need. From irrigation to greenhouse management and crop monitoring, fertigation and historical data analysis NetbeatTM a true all-in-one. It is both a sensor array and a decision support tool, data aggregator and resource manager. That said, at no time can the system afford to sacrifice its user-friendliness.
Experts from Elad were joined with Netafim throughout the design, development, and testing of the NetBeatTM platform – becoming an integral part of the team. Their main job is to assume the viewpoint of a NetBeatTM user and facilitate the creation of the features these users might require.
NetBeatTM is designed to be a modular solution, with the ability to support the smallest and the largest farms. As such, it requires a vast number of UI elements for farm modeling, data input, monitoring, control, analysis – and much more. Almost any kind of conceivable interface can be found within NetBeatTM: from tables, maps and schematics, to dashboards, queries, and charts. All these interfaces must be robust and versatile, yet easy to use. Their job is to make even the most complex workflows accessible to any user, focusing on glanceable insights and intuitive controls.
With that goal in mind, Elad specialists were assisting with NetBeatTM development even before UI/UX design. Their active involvement during the product requirements and system architecture planning stages enabled the creation of infrastructure upon which NetBeatTM features would be built.
As customer advocates, Elad teams have conducted thorough user research around the world. Interviews, surveys, and usability studies were undertaken with professional farmers, to understand what their needs are, and how a new system should address those needs.
During active development, Elad continued to support Netafim by creating the NetBeatTM UI/UX elements and remained the focal point for user experience expertise. Every screen and every feature in the system were designed for maximum convenience and modularity while supporting the most innovative technologies and multiple screen sizes.
This level of service was made possible by Elad’s acquisition of Netcraft in 2017. One of the leading UX agencies in Europe today, Netcraft employs the best UX specialists in Israel. Their experience and methodology were instrumental during the NetBeatTM planning and development phases.
Currently, Elad continues its work with Netafim on the next iteration of NetBeatTM – working towards the creation of a comprehensive next-generation digital farming platform.