During Quest Forum Digital Event: PeopleSoft Week, Steven Wright, Curriculum Director for Oracle University, presented on how to get started with PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface (UI). Wright’s five objectives for the presentation included:
- Explain the purpose and benefits of Fluid UI
- Understand how to navigate Fluid UI
- Describe Fluid user experience features
- Understand the administration and development effort of deploying Fluid UI
- Show how users can recognize Fluid UI enhancements in PeopleTools 8.56
Why Use Fluid User Interface
There are several reasons to use of PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface. The number of users has grown, and there is a greater need for self-service, analytics, and reporting, which requires a streamlined user experience. PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface is a simplified UI for experienced and administrative users, which breaks down large components and has guided steps. It also provides relevant analytical information quickly and easily. Finally, it is available anytime, anywhere, on any device.
There are four key features that are important to take note of when discussing PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface. It represents a significant enhancement to the PeopleSoft Classic User Interface. It also provides greater flexibility with the increased use of modern web technology. Additionally, it is the direction of all future PeopleSoft application developments. It is also adaptive and responsive based on the user device.
Some of the Fluid characteristics include streamlined content, recognizing device types and sizes, and deploying to devices based on device size and scales gracefully.
As of PeopleSoft 9.2 PeopleTools 8.55:
- From 8.56 onwards, the homepage is Fluid by default
- Navigation will be Fluid for all pages
- Many components remain in Classic UI
Fluid UI Terminology
Some terminology for elements of Fluid UI include:
- Form Factor
- Fluid Banner
- Fluid Homepage
- Fluid Tiles
- Action List
- Navigation Bar
- Fluid Structure and Content
- Fluid Dashboard
- Tile Repository and Tiles
- Fluid Navigation Collections
- Fluid Activity Guides
- Simplified Analytics
- Classic Plus
Form Factor refers to the size of the device rendering the application (small, medium, large, and extra-large).
The Fluid Banner is equivalent to the portal header, appears throughout the Fluid UI and is slightly different for homepage and transaction pages. It is important to note that on smaller form factors, banner fetabatures move to the action list.
The Fluid Homepage provides quick access to Fluid applications upon signing in. It is similar to PS Application Homepage or PIH Homepage. It is also important to note that it aggregates relevant content that shares a common purpose. Users are able to personalize their homepages by adding and removing homepages, renaming homepages, adding and removing tiles, and adjusting the order of tiles.
Fluid Tiles are navigational constructs for Fluid applications. Tiles act as links to business transactions and can display application content. They reside on the Fluid Homepage or Fluid Dashboard. Fluid Tiles are comparable to pagelets from the Classic portal. They can also display charts and since 8.55, tiles are resizable and interactive.
When you press the Action List button, you will reveal the Action List. This contains actions users can make based on the context of an application. Users can personalize items, add/remove them to homepages, add to favorites, and more.
The Navigation Bar allows navigation to:
- Recent Places
- Five most recent destinations
- My Favorites
- Edit favorites
- Destination added as a favorite
- Displays traditional hierarchical menu
- Different appearance same structure
- When on Classic page, navigate to a Fluid homepage
- When on Fluid page, navigate to a Classic homepage
Fluid Structure and Content is equivalent in function to Classic Structure and Content. It is primarily intended for the Portal Administrator role and used to manage Fluid UI elements. It consists of Fluid Homepages, Fluid Pages, Fluid PeopleTools, and My Preferences.
Fluid Dashboard is equivalent in function to Classic Dashboards. It is technically a homepage set up as an operational dashboard. Unlike a homepage, they are accessed via a link or tile. They can be personalized to add, delete, and rearrange tiles on the dashboard. Fluid Dashboard also serves as a utility to create dashboards. Completed Dashboards are published in Fluid Portal Registry. Unlike homepage creation, Fluid Dashboard creation and maintenance is accomplished using the Manage Dashboard Pages utility.
The Tile Repository contains the tiles that can be selected for a Fluid Homepage or a Fluid Dashboard. It resides under Fluid Structure and Content. Fluid Pages folder contains subfolders that contain tiles. The Tile Repository can also be used to create tiles.
There are four main characteristics of a tile. They are either static, dynamic, or interactive. Tiles are stored in the tile repository and they are created using Fluid Structure and Content, Application Designer, or Tile Wizard. It also directs the user to a target destination.
Tile Wizard allows the creation of tiles without having to use Structure and Content directly. It analogs to Pagelet Wizard in Classic mode and presents a five-step process to create tiles. Additionally, it supports five different data types.
Tile Wizard five-step process:
- Specify tile information
- Select the data type and data source
- Select the target page and tile repository location
- Specify display properties
- Review and publish the tile definition
Fluid Navigation Collections are an alternate structure to navigate to PeopleSoft components. It is a collection of shortcuts grouped by business function or administrative function. Generally speaking, it helps casual users and day-to-day users to navigate simply and get their job done faster.
Fluid Activity Guides provide definition of guided procedures for a user to complete. There is a presentation of a list of actions or tasks that need to be completed to finalize a set of activities. Fluid Activity Guides can also assist in carrying out administrative or business processes. There is also the option to use a template or an instance model. Finally, it is available in Classic and Fluid.
Simplified Analytics enables end users to create access analytic reports in the context of their normal flow of work. You do not need to navigate to a separate part of the system to retrieve or produce an analytic report. It is available for Fluid components only. Also, it enables Pivot Grid administrators or Pivot Grid Super Users to create and publish reports to all the users of a component. Simplified Analytics enables users to generate ad hoc analytics in the context of transactions. Finally, it puts reporting and analytic power in the hands of end users.
With PeopleTools 8.56, users can utilize Classic Plus. Classic and Fluid pages have and will continue to co-exist. This feature will display Classic pages with Fluid-like styling rather than standard Classic pages. Some PeopleTools pages delivered as Classic Plus include:
- My System Profile
- Pivot Grids (wizard, viewer)
- Process Scheduler
- Report Manager
- Time Manager
Some points to consider before deploying any PeopleSoft application in Fluid mode include:
- Not all applications are candidates for Fluid deployment.
- Are mobile devices such as cell phones and tablets used widely to access PeopleSoft at your site?
- Application Usage and Workload
- Does an application require functionality that does not exist in the Fluid UI?
In addition, keep in mind the eight steps of application development include:
- Design Application
- Create Fields
- Create Records
- Build Tables
- Create Pages
- Create Components
- Register Components
- Test the Application