Tea at work

Design a Tea Vending Machine experience and write a PRD


  1. By Tea Vending Machine (TVM), I am imagining a stand-alone setup that provides tea in exchange for a token or purchase.
  2. There are different Tea Cafe platforms like Chaayos, Chai point, and Wagh Bakri that serve chai in their offline cafes and are also present on food delivery platforms like Swiggy, Zomato, etc.
  3. For this case study, I am taking a scenario where Chai Point plans to set up a Tea Vending Machine (TVM) in an IT part in Gurugram.

Target audience and their purchase capabilities

Here, our target audience is IT professionals working from an office. Most of them have decent purchase capability and like to have tea twice a day.

Defining objective

To design a Tea Vending Machine (TVM).

Mind map for The Tea Vending Machine

Why set up a Tea Vending Machine (TVM)? 

For this case study, I am considering that Chai point did some market research and found that hundreds of people come to such IT parks every day and order tea at least once a day. They generally use food delivery apps to order tea, and once the order arrives, they share some ‘chai’ moments with colleagues and friends. Chai point has found that a TVM can improve their number of purchases because

  1. It is easier for people to just walk down to the TVM and get tea immediately, instead of ordering and waiting.
  2. Tea will be less expensive, because maintenance cost for the company is comparatively low for TVM, and there are no delivery charges.
  3. Now the number of tea orders is scattered among competitors. If Chai point can provide/ maintain good quality, this scattered audience can slowly become loyal and regular customers of the brand.

Possible pain points for customers

  1. There are no publicly available Tea Vending Machines in India right now. People can be slightly hesitant about how it works at the beginning.
  2. Most of the vending machines that we see in India still run on a cash system. Cash transactions are clumsy and time taking.
  3. Tea is our traditional go-to beverage. We can make countless varieties with different ingredients. The vending machine works on the principle that the customer knows what he wants. Most coffee and tea machines available in offices use ready-made powders. So they remove the freshness and scope of variety from the tea. Therefore, people can be slightly hesitant about the taste.

Key Features of the Tea Vending Machine

For the MVP we are going to address the first two pain points

  1. Cashless – the process should be cashless. Customers can use QR codes to visit the app/ webpage, choose ingredients, and purchase tea online. The system can give a Bar code/ QR code that customers can scan in the vending machine to get their tea. For the MVP, the system can generate a Purchase ID and an OTP and share them via SMS.
  2. Quick execution (order and delivery) – The customer can order from his office and collect tea whenever he likes.
  3. Hygiene – the entire TVM is machine-controlled and involves no human touch. 
  4. PWA – Add webpage to the mobile home screen for a better re-order experience which will lead to greater retention.

User journey

  1. The Tea Vending Machine has QR codes printed on all sides and is shaped so that people can scan it from every direction, even from their office window.
  2. A customer scans the code, which leads him to the PWA of the Chai Point catalog page. The customer can add the PWA page to their home screen for future orders. 
  3. The page has different options like the kind of milk to be used, the tea strength, or ingredients like ginger, basil, and cardamom as the customer prefers.
  4. The footer shows the total price.
  5. After clicking proceed, the payment page appears.
  6. After the payment, the customer receives an SMS with the purchase ID and OTP.
  7. Whenever the customer wants to have his tea, he can go down to the Vending Machine and provide the Purchase Id and OTP to collect his tea.
  8. A digital display will show the selected ingredients getting mixed.
  9. The tea comes up from the vending machine.
  10. An SMS with a feedback link will be shared with the customer after collecting his tea.


Customer experience flow chart


  1. How many scans are happening per day?
  2. How many people are ordering per day?
  3. How many people are saving the PWA to the home screen?
  4. How many people are using the saved PWA to order again?
  5. How many people are ordering/ having tea frequently?
  6. Rise in per day order before and after the installation of TVM.
  7. What type of tea do people prefer the most and the least?
  8. When do most transactions happen?
  9. When do most people collect their tea?

There are more case studies like this.