Platform Adoption Tool

Sketches of user flow through client application.
Sketches of user flow through web site.
Wireframe of client dashboard.
Wireframe of client screen initiating upload of binaries.
Final design of client screen initiating upload of binaries.
Final design of client dashboard.

The Microsoft Developer & Platform Evangelism group built the Platform Adoption Tool (PAT) to collect information about which Microsoft technologies ISVs were using in their applications, and in return, provide valuable insight back to the partner.


Pencil and Paper / Illustrator


PAT has two main components—the web site and the click-once client app. The web site’s primary functions include: marketing the program; setting up new user accounts, and reporting back results from the client app. After setting up an account, the WPF client app walked users through filling out product profile information and uploading binary files.

Research showed users of this site and tool have a mix of both technical and non-technical skillsets, so the tool and site had to be able to serve two groups that don’t always speak the same language. Previous versions of the tool involved multiple complex steps that often confused the user, so the new versions’ main goal was to increase the ease-of-use since the information the partners provide is key to the success of the tool.

To accommodate the two user groups, it was heuristically determined that a variation on a ‘wizard’ was needed as a guide through the process. Less technical users are guided through all the steps while power users can jump straight to the step they need in order to complete the steps. After discussing and mapping out possible user scenarios, I put my designs on paper exploring different solutions for both audiences.

Iterative cycles of wireframes and prototypes led to a final client interface that includes: a dashboard listing snapshots of status reports and messages, prompts to encourage the user to complete product profiles, and the ‘wizard’ guide that served both user groups as they filled out their product’s profile. Finally, I guided a visual designer through creating the interface skin while maintaining the experience for the user groups.

Expertise Involved: