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Simple Trade


Cloud-Based Investment Web App


Product Manager, Software Engineers, UI Developer, Client Service and Technical Writer


Hedge Fund Trader

Eclipse is an award-winning platform that supports hedge funds full investment process. It has 10+ product areas and Trading is the most important one. This project journal documents my collaboration with stakeholders and the design process for the Simple Trade function. This feature successfully improves trade entry speed by up to 70%. Additionally, our team won the Championship of The 2020 Eze Innovation Challenge.

* Confidential information has been omitted or redacted. The designs and information presented do not representative of the actual product.

My Role

Collaborate with Stakeholders: Achieved business and functional goals with stakeholders by effective communication and collaboration.

Ownership of design: Lead and own this project’s design from start to finish; including research, ideation, wireframe, prototype, usability test and UI design.

Be the voice of users: Understood users’ needs, problems, contexts, and made design decisions that stand for users.

Day 1 | Discovery

The Product Manager, who was responsible for Trading, scheduled a project initiation meeting. The stakeholders in this meeting included the Product Manager, Software Engineer, and myself as the UX Designer. To gain a deeper understanding of the project, I prepared some questions in advance.

Key Takeaways

New or Redesign

New feature related to an existing function

Design Due Date

Two weeks from now


Create a simple and fast method for trade order creation

Additional Requirements

Compliance check and order creation statuses are necessary

Primary User


Projected Use Frequency

Very high, 10-30 times per day

Project Plan

After the meeting, I created a design plan for the next two weeks. This plan helped me balance my time with other projects and schedule design review meetings in advance.

Day 2 | Research

I tried to seek opportunities to speak with clients directly, especially Traders. Unfortunately, the R&D department had limited client meeting allowances at that time. In this situation, I came up with alternative approaches to gather more insights about the users.

Who is Trader?

The UX team had previously created personas for all professional positions within a typical hedge fund company. I revisited the Trader persona and emphasized the relevant information for this project.

What do Traders Need?

Client feedback and notes from client meetings were documented and shared within the R&D department. During my research on trading-related topics, I came across something useful for this project.

“I need a way to add orders when I’m viewing Analytic data.”

“Many orders were created without routes. I want to add these orders easily.”

“Can we preconfigure routes so I don’t have to fill all those fields when I create an order?”

How Does the Existing Function Work?

The Simple Trade feature would be built upon the existing trader order creation function. To gain a comprehensive understanding of the function's workflow in various scenarios, I placed different types of orders and summarized the process.

How Do Competitors Solve This Problem?

I searched for quick trade solutions for hedge funds or financial organizations, but I didn't find any helpful results. I then expanded my search to consumer products and found an inspiring example in the Thinkorswim desktop software. It features a small trade ticket at the bottom that can be accessed from any tab.

Day 3-4 | Ideation

When generating ideas, my approach is to prioritize the objectives while exploring all possibilities. I began by considering which metrics could effectively measure and define the terms "simple and fast" within the current context. Subsequently, I engaged in a brainstorming session to identify potential solutions that can fulfill these sub-goals.

A Key Solution

By analyzing the data from backend tracking, it was discovered that 80-90% of orders did not have the "Strategy," "Trader," and "Manager" fields filled. This finding indicates that these fields are not necessary for the Simple Trade feature. Additionally, 60% of orders were created without route values, while the remaining 40% shared significant similarities in route values. Clients have also expressed the desire to preconfigure routes.

Concept I
Above Blotter

In this concept, Simple Trade can only be accessed from the Trading tab. It is a small order ticket above the trade blotter. It contains required fields for order details and an optional selection for preconfigured routes.

Concept II
Slide Banner

Simple Trade can be accessed from any screen. The order ticket window can be displayed or hidden using a slide-up banner located at the bottom or left side menu.

Concept III

Users can quickly type the order like coding. For example, b for buy, s for sell, etc. Type “b-1,000-BRKB-208.16” creates order “Buy 1,000 shares of BRKB at price $208.16”.

Users can access Simple Trade by clicking the floating button from any screen. The button and order ticket can be dragged and repositioned as needed.


I presented these concepts to stakeholders and got great feedback and more ideas. We thought Concept II and III were promising and should be further developed.

Day 5-6 | Develop

With new ideas and stakeholders' feedback, I worked on high fidelity wireframes and clickable prototypes to further develop Concept II and III. These helped to cover different user scenarios as well as prepare for usability tests.


Quick call-out Simple Trade by functional key F8.

All by Keyboard

All steps can be completed by only using the keyboard.

Concept II Highlights

More Recommendations, Less Typing

Recommendations can be quickly selected when typing.

Available on All Screens

Simple Trade is accessible from any sub-product screens.


Users can enable or disable the Simple Trade function based on needs.

Available Anywhere

Available on any product screen as well as outside the product’s browser.

All by Keyboard

All steps can be completed by only using the keyboard.

Concept III Highlights


When the product browser is active, Quick call out Simple Trade by functional key F8.

More Recommendations, Less Typing

Recommendations can be quickly selected when typing.


Users can enable or disable the Simple Trade function based on needs.

How to Make the Design Decision?

I presented the designs and prototypes to stakeholders. We liked both concepts and thought each one has its own advantages. It was hard to make a decision at the moment. I suggested that I could conduct quick internal usability tests to find out the answer.

Day 7-8 | Usability Tests

Small Sample Sizes: Sample size and reliability are unrelated, so SUS can be used on very small sample sizes (as few as two users) and still generate reliable results.

System Usability Scale

Considering time and cost, I decided to conduct the The System Usability Scale (SUS) test. Here are the advantages:

Measure Usability: SUS is designed to measure usability.

Effective Verify: SUS has been shown to effectively distinguish between unusable and usable systems as well as or better than proprietary questionnaires.

B: New concept II in a clickable prototype

3 Designs to Test

A: Existing trade order function in live product

C: New concept III in a clickable prototype

15 Participants

  • Each version was tested with 5 different internal participants

  • The 5 participants included different levels of trading experiences:

  • 2 advanced-level users

  • 2 intermediate-level users

  • 1 beginner-level user

  • Tests ran separately with each participant

Same Tasks

  • Each participant needed to complete the same set of tasks

  • Detailed instructions for tasks should not be provided

Screen Recording

  • Each participant used the same computer for testing

  • Recording started after the participant acknowledged the tasks

  • The recording ended when all tasks were completed

SUS Questionnaire Survey

  • A survey is created and shared by Microsoft Forms

  • Participants are asked to finish the survey questions right after completed all tasks

Click to view details.

Survey Results

Calculate & Interpret Scores

  • For odd items: subtract 1 from the user response.

  • For even-numbered items: subtract the user responses from 5

  • Add up the converted responses for each user and multiply that total by 2.5.

  • A SUS score can range from 0 to 100, it isn’t a percentage.

  • A SUS score above 68 would be considered above average and anything below 68 is below average.

Analysis of Variance

We used Analysis of Variance to compare the SUS scores. The results indicated that there were significant differences in the SUS scores among the three designs.

Results & Conclusion

Design C (Concept III) received the highest score of 82 and was rated as Excellent in terms of SUS usability.

It was observed that Design B had a shorter average completion time compared to Design C. This discrepancy may be attributed to participants needing some time to learn how to use the "coding" approach in the order ticket. It was believed that the learning curve for this method was short and straightforward. Once users became familiar with the "code" system, it was expected to be the fastest and most efficient method.

Day 9-10 | Deliver

I shared the design mockup with the technical writers to obtain UI copy support. I added UI notes and interaction instructions aligned with the product's design system. On the tenth day, I conducted a thorough walkthrough of all design details with stakeholders and subsequently delivered the design assets to the engineers.

Result: 70% Faster

Weeks later, the Simple Trade feature was successfully launched. Our team was awarded the winner of the 2020 Eze Innovation Challenge out of 39 teams. The quote below is from Fostering a Culture of Innovation: SS&C Eze's Innovation Challenge.

“It was the quick-entry trading ticket for Eze Eclipse that stole the show. The trading ticket enables users to trade from virtually any screen within Eze Eclipse, for example, an accounting report. There is even a button that hovers anywhere on the desktop to quickly enter trades, no matter where a user is working. Designed for fast, easy trade entry and optimized for the most common workflows, the new ticket improves trade entry speed by up to 70%.”

Three months after its launch, trade orders created through the Simple Trade feature have accounted for 30-50% of all orders. This significant adoption rate highlights its popularity among clients. The positive feedback received from clients indicates their satisfaction and enjoyment in using the new feature. Additionally, valuable suggestions and ideas for further enhancements have been provided, indicating the potential for continuous improvement and innovation.

Thanks : )

Please feel free to view other projects and contact me for more details.

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