Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Fluid Landing Page or Classic Portal Homepage ?

For PeopleSoft 9.2 customers that are thinking about Fluid there are many questions to answer.  I don't think it's as simple as "should I use Fluid or not".

Fluid is the name of a new user interface in PeopleSoft which is designed for self service, casual and executive users.  It's important to be aware that this new user interface is experienced at both a component (application) level and at a landing page (first page visible) level.

Throw the classic PeopleSoft Portal into the mix and it starts to get interesting.

Here are just a few of the questions and implications if you decide to "use Fluid".  There are no easy answers to these questions so a I simply offer some discussion.  Feel free to comment.  I'll be blogging a few suggestions over the next few weeks.

Q1) What do your users see when they first signin?  The Fluid landing page or the Classic Portal Homepage?  They look, behave and function very differently but essentially they both represent the initial view from which users will navigate to applications and/or view key business information (eg pagelet charts, queries, etc).  It potentially gets confusing for users if you give them both.  For example a user may log into PeopleSoft on their desktop PC and see the Classic Portal Homepage but then on their mobile device they see Fluid Landing page.

Fluid Landing Page

Classic Portal Homepage

Q2) Should I use the Fluid component or Classic component?  (for example in HR self service there is both a Fluid and Classic version of Absence Request).  Not all components have a Fluid equivalent and not all will because Fluid is primarily targeted at self service users.  The reality is that if you choose to use Fluid where it exists and Classic for all other components then some users will inevitably be switching between Fluid and Classic.  Potential for more UI confusion.  It's nice and tidy for the user who has 100% self service - give them access to the Fluid component only and all they will experience is Fluid.  However, if a user has both self service and access to the more complex classic components, then by using Fluid for the self service part this user will experience both user interfaces.

Q3) If I adopt Fluid then do I show the Fluid component on all devices my users might log in with or do I just restrict Fluid to truly mobile devices?  For example:  If a user logs in on a cell phone at home they may see the Fluid Landing page and Fluid components but back at the office, on a desktop do you show the Fluid Landing page and the Fluid component or the Classic Homepage and Fluid component or (more confusing still) the Classic Homepage and Classic component.  More potential confusion at the UI level if you determine the user interface (Classic or Fluid) based on what device they're using.

I'll be blogging some suggestions in time but please feel free to comment below.

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