There are so many reasons to love the latest release of OnSemble! In this blog series, we’ll share all of them—with a special twist. You’ll hear from four of the brilliant folks on the Passageways team who brought these updates to life. They all have one thing in common—they are deeply proud to work on the beloved drag-and-drop intranet, and they each have worked hard to ensure that OnSemble inspires even more employee engagement. Let’s get to know Neo. (Then be sure to meet Adam, Alyssa, and Kris, too!)
Neophytos Palettas, Senior Director of Design, came on full time in April 2018 after his design studio consulted with Passageways on OnBoard. He continues to work across both OnBoard and OnSemble to ensure the team stays focused on their particular product design approach—design is in how it works, not how it looks. This means asking questions about what’s viable, the product’s intent, and what will serve the practical and emotional needs of the user.
Favorite thing about working at Passageways
Neo said it simply, “There’s a significant amount of pride taken in the work we do here. I couldn’t imagine working in a place where that pride doesn’t exist.” This ethos is what makes the Passageways team so special. They move quickly and work hard, and everyone wants to be doing just that. You can always count on the fact that no matter what role you’re in, everyone is showing up with the same objective, everyone is aligned, and everyone wants to do phenomenally well. That makes the rest easy.
What he’s up to outside of work
Neo is currently renovating a house, which is taking up a lot of his time outside of work. He has a deep interest in architecture—a topic that he feels overlaps with product design! “You don’t call up a general contractor to just show up at a site and start nailing things together. Very rarely does that go well. Design is about thinking through all of the moving parts. What is the lifestyle of the family? How will they use the space? How can both the short-term and long-terms needs be anticipated, planned for, and met? Most importantly, have the practical needs been satisfied and will the result instill joy? From space design to product design, the thought mechanisms are the same.”
When he’s not metaphorically or literally designing houses and hammering nails, Neo has recently been geeking out about user interface (UI) design philosophy. Specifically, the new declarative framework SwiftUI for Apple platforms. A challenge of UI design is that product designers and developers must anticipate and design for every possible scenario. In Declarative UI, developers tell the framework what should occur – the superset of states, without needing to say explicitly how or tracking independent interaction effects.
How he made OnSemble 7 awesome
As a designer, Neo is adept at taking a customer’s murky request or a company’s corporate goal and turning it into an end experience that elegantly fits the expectation. We’re now in an era where you don’t expect to learn how to use enterprise software and there’s no tolerance for poor experience. The goal for OnSemble 7 was to reduce friction points, bringing in drag-and-drop elements and intuitive navigation. Every design decision helps you get back to the important work of boosting employee engagement within your organization.
Here are some of the key updates:
- When creating pages, you’ll get to enjoy a new intuitive interface while viewing page types and choosing from your favorite page templates. Plus, see all the available page layouts and your custom layouts right there during the page creation process.
- Changing the background color, background image, and opacity is easier than ever thanks to new-and-improved interface updates and drag-and-drop functionality. To make things super-clear, read-only information is now clearly labeled in its own section.
- How about that URL Page? No more deleting and recreating the page! Thanks to the latest updates, now you simply change the URL settings.