Ask the Devs – EcoImpact

Today we sat down with EcoImpact developer Kevin Zhang to discuss the launch of the EcoImpact platform and its continued development:

1.) What is your role for Trayak and how long have you been with the company?

I have worked for Trayak for over three years and I manage and develop the client side for EcoImpact. I have worked on COMPASS, MyGizmo and various other projects while working for Trayak as well.

2.) Can you tell us a little bit about some of the latest EcoImpact projects that you’ve been working on?

Recently we put in the EcoScoring module which gives a simplistic yet elegant way to present sustainability data for decision making, especially when tracking a handful of sustainability metrics with various types of measurement. We want to give designers and engineers one place to track EVERYTHING that matters to the sustainability of their product or package.

We’ve added some predetermined indicators from the GPPS handbook to help tracking of packaging sustainability metrics but we realize this will differ from company to company so we made this solution completely customizable.

We are always trying to find new ways to display data because at the end of the day, people want the results of their analysis displayed in the simplest way possible. EcoScore is our approach to that and I’m really excited about it.

3.) If you could describe EcoImpact with three adjectives, what would they be?

(Starts laughing)**

Innovative- We are always trying new things that no one in the industry has done before. Some of them work, some don’t, but through this process, we have really put together a solid platform.

Flexible- Every customer has their own sustainability goals and their own specific needs. As I’ve mentioned, we are doing everything in our power to make this platform as accessible and as robust as possible – while being as user-friendly as possible of course.

Collaborative-  A lot of focus and effort has been put into making EcoImpact a team platform. We have added read only permissions to projects, we have set new rules for these permissions and have made the security a lot stronger for shared documents when collaborating. This will enable teams to put together workflows that increase efficiency and drive innovation.

4.) Can you talk about some of the recent changes to the platform? How will these help product and package designers do their job more effectively?

We want EcoImpact to have a real and lasting effect on companies sustainability initiatives. To do this, we realize we need to deliver a powerful tool for designers and engineers that will not only deliver results, but also makes this process as effective and simple as possible. We will always be working to improve the platform. Recently we’ve worked very hard to improve the usability of EcoImpact by adding tool tips, mouse over indicators, and organizing the data and charts in the most meaningful way possible.

There has also been a lot of visual improvements to the reports that you can generate within the platform. We have improved the presentation of data based off of the scenario of the analysis. For example during a single package analysis, there will be a different information hierarchy in the reports vs. when there is a comparative analysis.

7.) Looking forward to EcoImpact’s future, what most excites you about the platform and the vision?

“I’m a big hippie and outdoorsman so hopefully we can save some trees!”

I just hope this platform can be used by as many key personnel in as many companies as possible to drive real change and have a real impact on this world.        =D

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