Design leadership: Power platform admin center

Design leadership: Power platform admin center

On November 1, 2017, I took on a new role at Microsoft as the Design Lead for a new and ambitious cross-product initiative, which 10 months later was released as the Power platform admin center. Read more about the site in Microsoft's words at the official press release. Problem Statement Unify four different admin centers - Dynamics 365 instance administration, Dynamics 365 app administration, admin.powerapps.com, and admin.flow.com - into a single experience on a new UI framework. 10 months later, the site moved out of private preview and into public release. The Team MY ROLE: Principal Designer and Design Lead…
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Azure Marketplace Gallery Filter

Azure Marketplace Gallery Filter

When we launched the new Azure Marketplace in January of 2017, we initially adopted the category control from AppSource.com, both for consistency and expediency on our tight timeline. After launch, however, customer feedback via verbatims and quantitative data began to suggest that our customers had a problem with wayfinding. The issue largely stemmed from the difference in information architecture between the sites. AppSource categories correspond to products and were more rigidly hierarchical, while Azure Marketplace categories had overlap and a less rigid hierarchy. I proposed to the team that we begin an exploration of alternate filtering models, and the team…
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Azure Partner UX Guidelines

Azure Partner UX Guidelines

When I returned to Microsoft in August 2016, I joined as the Design Lead for the Azure Framework. Our team of 4 full-time designers, 2 researchers, and a content writer - along with our studio head, who worked closely with us - were responsible for improving the user experience of the entire Azure platform in two primary ways. Our first role was to work directly with developers on key features or controls. Our second role was a broader, less direct influence over the rest of the 70+ partner teams we could not work with directly. Upon joining, I immediately saw…
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Marketplace Landing Pages

Marketplace Landing Pages

In early 2017, analysis of the AppSource.com telemetry revealed a potentially significant problem with the landing experience on AppSource.com, which was launched prior to my time partnering with the team. In partnership with our marketing and merchandising product managers, I worked to help both the AppSource and Azure Marketplace teams develop a roadmap for improving the landing experience. Problem Statement Since both AppSource.com and Azure Marketplace are driven by the same underlying marketplace framework, problems from both sites are indicated below. Customer satisfaction as measured from the home page on AppSource.com was extremely low Azure Marketplace lacked a home page,…
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Azure Marketplace 2.0

Azure Marketplace 2.0

In the fall of 2016, my responsibilities as the Azure Framework Design Lead expanded to include direct responsibility for our pro developer marketplaces. When we began, the only active marketplace in our purview was AppSource.com, but there was an immediate need to take the lessons learned on AppSource and apply them to a completely new approach to the existing Azure Marketplace. Role and Team For the 2.0 version of the Azure Marketplace, I was the sole designer, working with 3-4 program manager partners and several UI developers on a daily basis. In addition, I partnered with our team's content designer…
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Windows Automotive Notifications

Windows Automotive Notifications

Many of our in-vehicle apps needed to provide information to the driver, and expected the same interruption models they enjoy on mobile phones. However, in an automotive environment, interruptions threaten the driver’s safety. Our solutions had to work in a multimodal environment, with potential touch, voice or hardware input. We designed, tested and implemented a notifications system that optimized for drive-related, time-sensitive notifications where a simple binary action can be taken in the vehicle. Logistics Work on the Windows Automotive design team was broken into 2-week Agile sprints: each sprint was either Design/Exploration, Prototyping, Research, or Final Design Delivery. Phases…
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Cortana in the Car: VUI for Windows Automotive

Cortana in the Car: VUI for Windows Automotive

Design a new voice user interface (VUI) for use in the car that passes all automotive industry distracted driving safety standards. In addition, guide all 5 major feature teams on the appropriate use of speech within their areas (Start, Navigation, Media, Communications, and Car) CONTRIBUTORS: Myself (design owner) / 2 Program Managers / 2 Researchers Process Our early process focused on developing a push-to-talk experience that provided guidance to users without overwhelming. Careful attention was paid to multimodality, error handling, and the interaction between the VUI and GUI. I drove hands-on deep dives (in partnership with the lead Speech program…
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System Center “Concept Car” 2010

System Center “Concept Car” 2010

In 2010, we set out to explore a unified approach to the most complex IT processes - software deployment and incident management in large networks. From initial scenarios and paper sketches to high-fidelity prototypes, videos, and user testing, we used this "concept car" as a vehicle for exploring the impact of large screens, multiple product integrations and new approaches to object manipulation in a server environment. Our work was very well-received by our stakeholders and served as the inspiration for a number of concepts that made it into future design patterns and products, all the way through Azure's initial release. Design…
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