Pivotal Cloud Foundry


Pivotal Cloud Foundry (PCF): Leading the research and design of a cloud-native platform experience for application developers

The Work Is Never Done

PCF is a highly unique place to work because it consists of 80+ product teams, with 30+ teams specifically contributing to the experience of the main user persona: the enterprise application developer.

I lead the research and design of this 30+ cluster of product teams, know as the Pivotal Application Service (PAS).

Much of what I do includes facilitating cross-team workshops, and planning, leading, synthesizing, and presenting user research on personas, business opportunities, and behaviors.

I am also currently the design owner of Pivotal's open-source design system, Pivotal UI. More on this below.

A Sampling of Successes

Iterated on and consolidated 3+ years of disconnected research and proto-personas into a clearly articulated primary user persona and journey map by researching and mapping the app developer journey across 4+ industries and 10+ enterprise customers. These central research artifacts are used by PCF to build empathy for the user and understand differences across users depending on customer maturity, industry, and size.

Enabled user activity tracking through a key UI integration with a high-usage service, Autoscaler.

Introduced and executed initial rounds of user recruiting and research on 3+ product teams, the majority of which had never conducted concerted user research efforts nor had a dedicated designer.

Common activities and practices I employ at PCF

  • stakeholder + user interviews

  • rapid prototyping & concept testing

  • facilitate design brainstorming & feedback sessions

  • collaborate with developers

  • pair with product managers

  • lead cross-cutting work (2-5 teams)

  • enterprise user recruitment

  • journey mapping

  • educate and enable design-thinking throughout the organization



Facilitation Techniques, Tools Used

Facilitation Techniques:

  • Risk v. Value 2x2 diagramming

  • Affinity mapping

  • Problem prioritization matrix

  • Storyboarding

  • Persona creation

  • Service blueprint

  • Risks + mitigations

Recruiting, research, & design tools:

  • Typeform

  • OpenStack

  • Realtime Board

  • Figma

  • InVision

Other tools: 

  • Mixpanel

  • PCF's Command Line Interface (CLI)

  • Slack

  • Trello



project case studies are protected content. please email me directly to request.



Pivotal UI - Designing and advocating for the next level of maturity for an open-source platform design system

Developing a design system at PCF means partnering with 4 engineers and 10+ internal PCF teams to develop flexible components that work specifically within each product and also generally, as it's open source.

As the design lead of Pivotal UI, I regularly contribute new or improved UI patterns, such as scalable pagination and more robust checkbox selection, as well as lead regular feedback and review sessions to develop our documentation and guidelines.

“PUI enables consistency across our products” - various product teams

“Reusing components [using PUI] saves a huge amount of development time” - 12/14 developers surveyed

“There needs to be a central person(s) to consolidate and integrate feedback from different teams” - design director

“Our customers look to us for guidance on how to enable them to build better software - we should be leaders in design systems as well.” - James Bayer, PCF VP of Product