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GraceBlocks Pillar #2: Ease

Earlier this month, we started talking about a new initiative at GraceRock: the building of GraceBlocks. We shared that GraceBlocks will be a system for building amazing software, block by block. We then introduced the 10 pillars for a good system of record. In this week’s post, we explore pillar #2 Ease of use so that adoption is not just possible, but fun and exhilarating.

Talk is cheap when it comes to this topic. Just as a bee connecting to a flower feels beautiful and effortless, intricate detail and complexity lies below the surface. All too often, software designs get bloated, dated and as I’ve said before, cringe-worthy. Right now I can only cheaply talk as we buzz like bees building this GraceBlocks. Below we’ve outlined the goals for this pillar by audience: those who build Blocks and collaborators who use what creators make.

Exhilarating for creators

Our first goal is that creators love using GraceBlocks. They can get in quickly and easily start having fun creating Blocks. That means creators:

  1. Can set up an account in less than a minute
  2. Can use a free option to play, learn and explore
  3. Have options like icon and color pickers to control the system’s design
  4. Have simplicity + depth in defining the data they need to capture
  5. Can set up a robust system, without writing any code, in under an hour
  6. Could use the system on their own, or choose to collaborate with others
  7. Can establish governance over what collaborators see and use (we’ll unpack this one more under the control pillar in coming weeks)

Simple for collaborators

For collaborators to adopt GraceBlocks, creators will carry some responsibility. Without relevance, collaborators won’t adopt. Our job at GraceBlocks is to keep it simple and set the table as best we can so that the creators can deliver a feast to their collaborators. By setting the table we mean that collaborators:

  1. Experience sub-second response time for most actions
  2. Interact with a system built using accepted, modern user design interactions that is “spreadsheet easy*”
  3. Can easily access the system on their terms via desktop or mobile devices
  4. Don’t see bloated extra features because the system was created specifically for them
  5. Need not remember usernames or passwords by leveraging things like phone, Google or Single Sign On

*Spreadsheet easy?

Yes, we’ve said it. There is a reason collaborators today resort to spreadsheets to keep their information vs. adopting that newfangled mandated system. Spreadsheet’s are easy, fast and responsive. When we say that we are leveraging modern accepted design user interactions, it’s not just using current design paradigms on web applications, but also spreadsheet-like capabilities that lend directly to ease of use such as in-line editing, copy/paste and drag to copy are definitely top of mind right now.

Not sure what to create?

That’s where the GraceRock consulting can help out by offering consulting guidance and expertise with decades of enterprise HR systems design and architecture. Also, fear not, we’ll also have created some public Blocks you can start with to get those creative juices flowing. Our hope is that before we know it, we’ll all be busy bees building Blocks with ease.

Want to stay informed?

Request early access here. And we’ll keep you posted as we continue building GraceBlocks!

Read about the other pillars here:

May 18, 2021
January 27, 2020