Today we released some improvements to the People and Permission screens in Basecamp. We’ve improved the process for adding new people to a company within a project and we redesigned the Permissions screen with a number of subtle usability improvements. You’ll also find a new Administrators screen to easily control which people in the account holder’s company have Administrator powers. Check out the video below to see the changes.

The redesigned Permissions screen wasn’t really a redesign. 90% of the screen looks and works the same. We worked a lot with subtle changes in text size, positioning, and color in order to bring more clarity and spaciousness to the screen.

Here’s the old version:

And the new redesign:

Some quick highlights:

  • The old screen has red links scattered all over. It made the page feel messy. The new design only uses red for the “Add a new person” links.
  • We replaced the red “Add a company” link with a graphic button. We reused some code from Highrise to smoothly transition between the button and the “Add a company” form.
  • The old screen loosely employed a tab metaphor in the blue header. The phrases “People on this project” and “Change permissions” always appeared in the header, and one phrase would be linked while the other was regular black text depending on the page you were viewing. In the redesign, we decided to think of “Change permissions” as a process you enter and leave. We renamed that action to “Add people, remove people, and change permissions.” Now the entire blue header is devoted to this action, and there is a blue “Go back” link below the header to return to “People on this project.”
  • We bumped up the font size on peoples’ names and wrapped them in <label> tags. Now each name is a generous mouse target. We did the same for the radio buttons that appear to the right of people with access to the project. Clicking around is much nicer now.

We played with a number of wilder revisions before settling on these very subtle changes. Sometimes the hardest part of redesigning something is realizing where you had it right in the first place. We hope you like the changes.