Mid-June will see the first release of the new user interface (UI). The release as alluded to in one of my earlier posts will be made available initially to a smaller subset of our client base, just those using the Practice Manager version of WorkflowMax, and relates only to a few strategic parts of the application.
Due to the complexity of the update and the complete rewrite of the interface in the latest technology available, in order to mitigate any risk, lower any training time and to ensure a smooth transition, we are going to be rolling out the release incrementally – both in terms of the product itself and to targeted sections of our user base. The logic behind this decision is threefold:
- By releasing to a smaller number of sample users, we can garner feedback around product usage and issues, and fix any problems before rolling out to a much wider user base.
- Minimising the impact on each user as we roll out an iterative release process, allowing each business to understand the changes incrementally across parts of the application - as opposed to having to deal with a brand new application on day one.
- Minimise the impact on our internal support and documentation team as they ready themselves and their responses for a wider release.
Over the past 18 months we have applied significant resources into reimagining and rebuilding WorkflowMax. This first release of the UI is a culmination of months worth of analysis, design, engineering and investment and is a major milestone on the journey towards our vision of building the most beautiful, functional and easy to use Job Management solution and Practice Management solution in the cloud.
With this release, we have done much more than simply update the user interface: we have taken the time to build efficiencies into the interactions, to improve the usability and to allow each user to distill the information down to only the subsets of data that relate to them.
The first modules of the new user interface are set to be released in mid June to all of our users who are currently using the WorkflowMax Practice Manager version. Version one will contain all new:
- Client Module
- Global Search
- Adhoc Time entry
- Invoice and Quote Manager screens
- Header navigation
- WIP Management
- Tax Preparation (for New Zealand only)
Across the next month I will post a series of blog posts delving deeper into the functional enhancements in each of the above modules, with screenshots and videos detailing the new features. It is important to note that we will be renaming the WorkflowMax Practice Manager version to now be known as Xero Practice Manager which forms part of the Xero Practice Studio suite of products.
Following this initial release we will continue to evolve, with the Reporting and Time Sheets solution targeted for release over the coming months. When time sheets are deployed and all issues are resolved with the new UI we will then roll out the changes to all standard WorkflowMax users. We haven't yet begun development of the time sheet functionality so as yet we can't put a date on this release, however we will endeavour to complete it and get this functionality rolled out as quickly as possible.
The appeal of the iterative release approach means you can progressively experience significant parts of the new user interface and its capabilities without having to wait for the entire application to be finished. It also means that any learning or up-skilling is a kept to a minimum as small changes are included in each release cycle.
I already use WorkflowMax Practice Manager – Will I need to migrate my data to the new system?
No, you will not need to do anything. Your account will be automatically upgraded
How can I find out more and prepare myself for the new user interface?
Over the upcoming month we will be posting a number of blog posts to outline the new features. We’ll also be running a number of webinars in late May to show and train you on the new user interface.
I use the standard WorkflowMax Job Costing product – Will I have access to the new user interface?
The first release will only be available for our clients using the Practice Management module. Once we complete the time sheet rebuild we will then release the new user interface to our standard WorkflowMax clients - we haven't yet begun the time sheet development so we aren't yet in a position to be able to quantify exactly when this will be, but as soon as we have confidence in a date we will definitely be communicating it.
Are there any pieces of functionality that I will lose in the new UI?
In the Clients screens we have not completed the Notes and Documents tabs – so these will not be available in the first release of the software. Although we have a workaround in place where you will be able to setup a custom field against the client record to allow you to access the old UI to use the notes and documents functionality there. The support team will be able to assist you with this.
Also the start / stop timer will not be available in the first release. If you use this feature heavily then we will need to turn off the new user interface enhancements for you, so please do let us know.