Using Transposit to automate our alpha user onboarding (part 2)

In a matter of hours (not the days or weeks it might have required prior to Transposit) we built an application to simplify our process.

Tina Huang · Oct 16, 2018

In our previous post, we discussed using Transposit and Airtable to manage a user whitelist. But we quickly discovered that the process of sending invitations by hand was prone to errors (we’ve all received that email where someone copy/pasted the wrong name) and a bit tedious.

So, in a matter of hours — not the days or weeks it might have required prior to Transposit — my colleague Nina built an application to simplify and error-proof the process.

The manual process

We had two email templates to send: the initial email to be sent from the team member with the closest relationship to the user for personal context, and a follow-up email sent from our support team to establish the ongoing support relationship. The flow went like this:

The manual steps were easily missed, leading to lost users. There was also the potential for mistakes, like incorrect values being populated in our whitelist, which meant users were denied access even after they received the welcome email. The tracking spreadsheet being manually updated meant that it would easily fall out of sync.

Applications are increasingly about integration

As more and more of our lives are being run by third-party services, applications that help us operate more efficiently are increasingly about connecting these various services and providing easy interfaces customized for specific tasks.

For our alpha user onboarding flow, we were primarily connecting Google Mail, Google Spreadsheets, and Airtable, tying them together with some custom logic, and adding a lightweight UI.

An example application interface

Building before the days of Transposit

To build one of these applications without Transposit, we might spend considerable time on engineering overhead, including:

All this overhead means that even the simplest applications, once they need to integrate with various third-party services, can take weeks or months to build.

Simplicity with Transposit

Transposit provides lightweight hosting facilities with a number of ready-to-use templates for common use cases, integrated with a unique managed authentication solution. Our managed authentication solution handles front door access to your application, but also a connect page that allows users to authenticate third-party data sources.

The real power of using Transposit to handle authentication is that it enables the Transposit relational engine to do all the heavy lifting for your integrations. Our templates and hosting mean that you can have beautiful applications with only modest frontend skills; developers can focus exclusively on the business logic that ties together these services.

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