Microsoft Azure Active Directory

Azure Active Directory (AAD) is a cloud service offered by Microsoft to organizations running Azure, allowing companies to create and manage users, groups, apps, and devices within their organization. The current version of Azure is used by over half of the Fortune 500 companies.

The goal of Azure is to help IT admins manage the IT resources of companies, from small shops to hyperscale multinational organizations.

My contribution

A new version of Azure is in the works, and many existing processes are being redesigned. As an interaction designer on the Identity team, I focused on improving the processes for managing apps, users, and groups in the Azure Preview Portal.

Process

I regularly met with program managers, developers, prototypers, and designers to discuss the progress and goals of Azure Active Directory, and what we could make to achieve those goals. Our process typically started with whiteboard iterations, and went directly to rapid high-fidelity prototypes, thanks to an internal prototyping tool and well-defined design language. We were then able to share the prototypes with stakeholders, and with future users in usability tests.

Scalability was central to my design work – the fields should function just as well if there are two items beneath them, or two million. This impacted the types of searching, filtering, and data visualizations I explored.

Outcomes

Azure Active Directory is now available. Much of what I contributed to is visible in this video: