Nate Green

UX Designer

Report Gateway automation and sharing

MRI Software

To maximize the product's learnability, I heavily reused UI patterns for configuration editing of system objects.

Report Gateway had received a lot of feedback from users that they needed more advanced automation features to save them time and make their reporting practices more sustainable.

Working with the product team, I sorted these requests into two main categories:

  • The need to combine reports into a single document, and
  • The need to generate multiple reports based on a data set, such as a list of accounts or properties, or even a date range

To solve for the first need, we created packets, which allowed users to generate multiple reports in sequence and output a single document. These documents could be automatically shared when generated—for instance, they could be emailed to stakeholders.

For the second need, we created batches, which allow users to choose a dataset from their property management systems, and generate one report (or packet) for each of the items in that list. These too could be scheduled and shared automatically with stakeholders.

Variables in low-code configuration UI

Users for this product ranged from accountants to IT staff members. To help them meet their reporting needs, the UI needed to be low-code but very dynamic.

Think about it: In order to generate one report for each commercial real estate property in a list, we need to be able to "pass in" the property's name, ID, and/or other data fields. Users need to know definitively what the boundaries are (i.e. what is available for passing dynamically) and they need to be able to mix and match dynamic data with static configuration.

I created a reusable UI pattern that allowed users to enter static data, but switch to dynamic variables when needed.

With the variable pattern I designed, code-averse users can create reports that are as dynamic as if they were generated by a CI pipeline.

Scaling quickly using UI patterns

Using the variables pattern I designed, I created screens for each dynamic feature we worked on over the course of a couple of years.

Along the way, I created scores of artifacts to communicate the design to stakeholders and development team members—flow charts, UI prototypes, mockups for each kanban card, etc.