Today, our earth’s resources are under great pressure and the world’s population is growing. We need to find better solutions to use and reuse global resources. Tomra is a multinational that is pioneering in the sorting industry for recycling, mining and food. Their ambitious philosophy is to create solutions to help optimise our earth’s resources.
Tomra’s sorting machines have incredibly advanced technology; their recycling machines can analyse and sort a football stadium covered in rubbish in less than 15 minutes. However, despite the machines being highly advanced, the digital interfaces on the machines — the primary controls – were clunky, non-holistic & inefficient. Committed to delivering exceptional experiences, Tomra turned to Design Partners to collaborate, redesign and unify the User Interface experience for their entire fleet of sorting machinery.
Our rigorous research included visiting thirteen factories, mines and facilities in six countries and the detailed analysis of a dozen of their varied, existing machine interfaces. As the complexity of the initiative became evident, and as the conflicting requirements of each industry emerged, we established a clear project mission: to create a design system, philosophy and set of rules that can be applied across all Tomra’s industries that revolutionises their human-machine interactions.
Close collaboration between Design Partners and Tomra was the key to success. To optimise the workflow for their end-users required a deep understanding of the operators, the machines and their environment. For example, we observed operators being ten feet away from the screen while reviewing recycled materials and trying to glance back at the screen to assess the live status of the sorting process. Insights such as this led to a considerably improved and simplified user experience with the new graphical user interface encompassing a one-screen layout, so users can see all critical information and real-time sorting data at a glance.
“The Tomra CUI is a new and innovative user interface design that makes Tomra sorters more accessible, and easier to use and operate. Our customers get better control and performance from their sorter and ultimately enhance their productivity."
John McGloughlin, Head of Innovation - TOMRA Sorting Solution
The ambition, to optimise our planet’s resources, combines environmental concerns with commercial objectives. This vision became the cornerstone for decisions made on the project: an experience that empowers users to have better control over our earth’s resources.
The design was awarded a prestigious International Design Excellence Award.