One of the guys that tested the ERP I'm developing has noticed the following:

When a user role changes, this should be reflected immediatelly in the system. At this time the changes in user permissions is evident only when the user relogin.

I agree with the tester, however, I'm not sure which approach I should use to solve this problem. Let's suppose a user has "payment" role assigned, then the admin of the system decided remove this role from this user, however the user is doing some work. What should I do? Refresh the entire user interface cancelling all the tasks he is doing, verify if the task he is working on is related to the role he left and refresh the UI in this case or wait until he finishes his work and only then refresh the UI?

  • 1
    Cancel everything. When the user is no longer permitted to do stuff, there is no point in letting him/her finish the work as it won't be (or should not be) accepted by the back end anymore. Oct 24 '13 at 11:58
  • 2
    @MarjanVenema that makes sense when privileges are revoked, but I don't see why it's necessary when they're added
    – Ben Brocka
    Oct 24 '13 at 14:09
  • @BenBrocka: Agree with that. Please note that OP is talking specifically about removing privileges. Showing added privileges can wait until a task is completed, or even until re-login. Only if the added privileges would affect the task at hand and restarting the task would mean losing a lot of work, would it be necessary to consider updating the UI immediately for added privileges. Oct 24 '13 at 18:13
  • Oh, must have misread
    – Ben Brocka
    Oct 24 '13 at 19:51

You could use notification pattern with optional blocking layer. This approach is:

  • Understandable and visually distinct.
  • Non-obtrusive, as it allows to continue current task execution. Also blocking layer could be used to break current interaction.
  • Informative, as notification bar could contain not only message, but some useful links and tools, too.
  • User friendly, as the interface doesn't change at once in some unexpected way. Sudden interface change can confuse user.

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