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IBM OpenPages with Watson

End-to-end product redesign

IBM OpenPages with Watson is a user-centric, AI-infused and highly scalable GRC (Governance, Risk & Compliance) platform that runs on any cloud.

ROLE: Design Director

TEAM: 10 Designers – UX, Research, Content

DATE: 2017 – 2020

LOCATION: Multiple Locations

With continued growth in regulatory environments and increasing business complexity across industries, there’s more need now than ever for enterprise tools to help companies manage risk. 

OpenPages excels at:
•  Identifying risk exposure
•  Managing & tracking risk exposure
•  Mitigating risk

OpenPages was acquired by IBM in Oct. 2010. Though the product was highly functional it was experientially  outdated. This introduced significant technical, relational and process-centric challenges for my team and I to overcome on our way to a complete redesign.


Despite a technically deep and highly functional product with a strong user base, OpenPages was more than showing its age by the time I joined in 2017. User experience-wise, there were numerous usability as well as performance challenges to overcome. It was clear there were no easy fixes for this - a holistic solution was needed.


Having joined in 2017, my team and I were all new to OpenPages and had no history working with the existig team. The design team prior to ours famously clashed with product management and was ultimately dissolved. We would need to create new bonds, build trust and give ourselves a solid foundation before anything else.

Our team was newly formed, comprised of long-time OpenPages folks and brand new designers. We’d never worked together and had no cohesive process to speak of. As we built relationships, we had to build our new cross-disciplinary new process at the same time.
Melbourne, AU — Client Workshop
Durham, NC — Client Workshop
From the beginning we used Enterprise Design Thinking and workshops as a means of aligning ourselves across disciplines, planning our releases and our user research.  
Boston, MA — Client Workshop
We regularly ran such team-wide workshops to establish scope and vision for our releases, which we invited our stakeholders and users to engage in. 

The outcome of our three year endeavor was a completely redesigned and recoded product with one-hundred percent feature parity. In addition to re-imagining all of OpenPages’ existing user experiences we layered in a task-based UI, empowering users to customize their preferred workflow, in addition to AI-assistance throughout. 

Legacy UI > Redesigned UI
Task-based UI: User-defined dashboard
IBM Watson Insights: AI-assisted controls mapping
Task-based UI: Loss event workflow creation
Having applied IBM’s Carbon Design System to the entirety of OpenPages, over the course of six major releases, we did the same with our marketing assets to complete the redesign of our ecosystem. 

The feedback from our users was our primary barometer for success, which across the board was overtly positive. Beyond that we received recognition in our industry with multiple awards for user experience and a “Leader” placement in Gartner Magic Quadrant.  

Red Dot Winner: User Experience
Risk Markets Technology Award Winner: User Experience
Gartner Magic Quadrant: Leader