Switchboard Web App

Switchboard is Digium Switchvox’s call management web application. Users can monitor and manage their company’s call networks, as well as communicate with contacts on their VoIP network. This application features window-like applications, or “widgets,” so that users can customize their layout to often-used Switchboard functions. This was a complete redesign from its decade-old interface.

Early mockup of hover behavior

Early mockup of hover behavior

The goal of this redesign was to reflect the changes in Switchboard’s functionality. During development, several functions like chat and video chat were introduced, adding new capabilities to the application’s roster. The aim was to create a sleek interface that supported Switchboard’s new functions as well as its old.

The design team chose to integrate a flat design to modernize Switchboard’s interface. We removed unnecessary functionalities, such as mouse dragging and animations. This allowed for a minimal design layout. Before, it wasn’t intuitive to the user what was draggable and what certain animations meant. For example, the user could transfer a call by dragging the call card to a contact card in another window. This isn’t very intuitive to the user, as there were no icons or drop zones that afforded the dragging function. Dragging was replaced with clicking a “Transfer” button in the call card, and then clicking “Complete Transfer” in the contact card. Restricting functions to solely point-and-click made the interface much clearer and less confusing for the user.

Old version featured dragging, but no affordance for drop zones.

Newer version features clear, clickable transfer buttons.

Switchboard’s design was challenging in the sense that new call functions had to interact with older elements. We had to introduce these new functions in a way that was native to the user and easy to use repetitively. Overall, this new design allowed this application to be a tool for users to customize it to their own usability styles.

Early wireframes and mockups

Final version