I'm a big fan of Nathan. He exemplifies collaboration and partnership with great humility. He is a knowledgeable leader/coach on his agile teams. He champions the customer experience and great design while remaining focused on pragmatic and feasible solutions. He owns his own continuous improvement and seeks to coach and lead those around him. Great products person all around.
Casey Flinn, Senior Director of Products at Accruent
Senior UX Designer
Austin, TX June 2016 – Present
Austin, TX March 2014 – May 2016
Austin, TX July 2008 - March 2014
DAY & NIGHT DESIGN
Austin, TX July 2003 - June 2008
Nathan has been a true partner for me for the last several years at Accruent. I’ve had the chance to observe his UX work on a variety of projects, and have seen his user and stakeholder communications improve immensely, along with his skills in the UX craft. Nathan has the unique ability to understand the subjective experiences and goals of a wide range of users as well as the complexities of software design. He is relentless in advocating for better, simpler product experiences for our users and is a force to be reckoned with in the quality and quantity of work he produces.
Sam Freed, Senior Product Manager
Nathan hired me at Marketing Matters as I was just starting off as a web developer. As my manager, he helped me develop my skills and introduced me to many tools of the trade. Nathan was always willing to answer any questions, give advice, and act as a mentor. While maintaining a leadership role, he would also encourage team input in order to promote a collaborative environment. Nathan was a great manager and helped me with a successful start to my career.
One of the most successful new features in an existing product took several agile iterations and was validated at an 80% confidence level of success. The feature itself was a smashing success for the enterprise product, Siterra. The final product saves a user much time and aggravation from what previously was implemented.
This document was a UX team effort. It was designed to be socialized internally between product managers and the UX team. It was an informal agreement of deliverables based on Agile processes on how the UX process is applied at Accruent and when the UX team engages products and engineering.
A sample screen of a list of results in a Google Map. The Tower Portal project is a site selection service that takes site data from another enterprise application, Siterra, and places it in a geographical search. The total experience for the user is an easy-to-locate site selection that produces an application to the carrier that requests information and details regarding that user's interest in the site.
An administrator can choose and select from thousands of custom fields to place into a site details view in Tower Portal. The traditional picker was chosen from other experiences due to the potential volume of extended attributes a user can search from. The picker also allows for both drag and drop and multiple selections.
A simple redline outlining user requirements in a field that was delivered to engineering to create.
This design is a Single Sign On screen that will be adopted by all Accruent products by the end of 2017. The design is both responsive and versatile. It can accommodate the many variations that the Accruent product line's current log in screens have, all the while maintaining a consistent look and feel.
A complex utility dashboard design showing the simplicity of integrated data across multiple products. This project created 17 distinct dashboard designs for a variety of different user personas demonstrated as a single product. The designs were then socialized for customer discovery and validated during a 5 month research project.
We got it! (Really.)
In product development, it’s often easy to envision a product that we THINK users want. However, in reality, users don’t want it or don’t find it as useful as we imagined. This is a problem that user experience (UX) designers and product managers face every day – how do we really know what is valuable? Fixing this age-old problem requires communication, testing, and collaboration.
General touch point communication is what user research and collaborative development are built on. Communicating with the client in regular calls often spurs confidence with development’s progress and the work of the prototypes. Showing a task flowchart during these calls can also assist in producing valuable conversations between a UX designer or product manager and the client. Having engineers and quality assurance sit in on calls help them understand the problems we are solving. Overall, general communication creates a better product in a timely manner. Without it, assumptions, oversights and mistakes are made that could be costly to the budget.
Once we have an idea of what is needed, we can build prototypes to start user testing. Showing prototypes to real product end users and testing their effectiveness and help user experience designers and product managers adjust and correct issues before something goes into code. This saves on costs because retroactively fixing a mistake after coding can cost up to ten times as much. Through user testing and research, we can also determine user personas, which are the stories that identify the role of the person at an organization that uses the software being developed. These personas are shared across teams so everyone has a good idea of who our user is and what they do to improve overall communication. Personas also create a language that help our teams when the begin collaborating on development.
Collaborative development begins with several teams coming together to scope the problem’s use cases. One tool UX designers or product managers may use for collaboration is an activity called card sorting. Card sorting allows everyone to participate in thinking about what the product is and what it should do. Quite often coming together on a card sort produces a larger volume of ideas, overlap, and outliers than an individual could think of alone. The result is cleaner, more robust information that the whole team understands. Collaborative development continues with Agile practices of incrementally developing small chunks while checking the project’s progress. The team convenes frequently to discuss issues and matters at hand, and, if they are at a point where a pivot on a concept is needed, it is often early enough to avoid costly fixes.
At Accruent, we practice communication, user testing, and collaboration in all our development. This has proven to be a way to save money and provide continuous improvement though iteration and incremental development. We communicate with our clients so that we can be confident that the right product is being produced and will be warmly received and used. Product management and user experience collaborates with engineering and professional services, bringing them into the customer calls and other conceptual activities. We research who our users are, test our work, and socialize the findings. We understand what it takes to make great product. We got it, really.