I'm looking to get a sense of what is out for intermediary interfaces for mid-implementation/setup for cloud applications (enterprise or otherwise) - I'm exploring the idea of providing some level of value to users before full functionality is available for a SaaS application. This might include messaging about implementation progress, a dashboard with partial functionality, and links to FAQ articles.

Can anyone point me in the direction of any applications or services that do something like this? I haven't had much luck yet so far with my search.

  • It sounds like you are just talking about alpha releases. Where an application is released, but it does not necessarily include full functionality. I would say just make a decision on the features you want to include and release it as a 0.x version alpha release, and put a big sign on there making it obvious it's a work in progess.
    – musefan
    Aug 26, 2020 at 15:28
  • Thanks for the input, though that's not what this is. To clarify, here's the scenario - this application may take 3 weeks to actually get a customer/user fully setup, since it requires integrations with other services (an ERP, etc.), as well as a bunch of manual configuration on my company's support side. This is still a full release, but the user won't be able to take 100% advantage of the platform until that implementation setup is complete. However, there is some functionality we can provide day one because it doesn't require any configuration. Aug 26, 2020 at 15:34
  • Ah ok, I see what you mean now. I think similar logic to an alpha can apply though. The key thing is making it obvious to the user that not all functionality is currently available. A link to a list of limitation would also be useful. You basically just need a a banner on all pages saying "Limited functionality is available while we setup your account. Click Here for a list of limitations"
    – musefan
    Aug 26, 2020 at 15:38
  • If this is an already existing service, have you talked to customers or customer support? What are customers' questions and expectations at this point of the process? I guess that would be a start for the exploration? Aug 27, 2020 at 9:26

1 Answer 1


Perhaps a different way to think about the cycle of your software application is to view it as a continuous release cycle rather than defined stages.

If the nature of the application is that there are core functionalities that don't require integration, and additional functionalities that rely on integration, it is probably safe to say that there will be other integration to be added on later down the track as well.

Therefore, the default state of the application should already be designed so that there are empty states for expected integrations that are in progress, and empty states for integrations that might be scheduled (depending on what your SDLC looks like), and perhaps even states for integrations that will be removed or phased out.

When considering the overall design system or patterns for your application, if you account for the entirety of its expected lifecycle, or that of the key components, it will save you a lot of effort later down the track.

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