About the project
A boutique investment house needed an easy way to get documents to and from their clients. They also needed this investor portal to be both easy for investors to use and easy for portal admins who didn’t have a lot of tech-savvy.
Objectives for the Investor Portal:
- Allow unlimited client accounts
- Allow each client to login and view the client account(s) associated with them
- Allow for multiple website users to view a specific client account and users to be able to be assigned to multiple client accounts
- Allow for easy removal of a user from a client account
- Allow for easy organization of files and storage of up to 5 years of files
- Allow for file upload
- Allow for central document area where all portal users could view these central documents
- Allow for announcement to be sent to all portal users
- Allow for private messaging system between portal admins & portal users
- WordPress site
- Responsive design
- Easy for portal admins
- Easy for portal users
- Detailed user guide for portal admins
- Quality Assurance
- Speed Optimization
When the Agency brought us this project, they were in a bit over their head. They didn’t know what questions to ask or what would be involved.
We started with a design document, breaking down the functionality and discovering the truly needed functionality of the investor portal. With a few rounds of question & answer, we had a complete design document and firm quote & timeline for the Agency. The Investment House was so blown away by the level of detail and organization they signed the Agency’s contract immediately.
Building the Investor Portal
First, the client needed better hosting and a better theme. The Investment House was using cheap hosting with no backups or security. We got them moved to Flywheel hosting and changed out their theme and added a full security setup.
Users, Groups & Accounts
One of the challenging aspects was the need for multiple website users to view multiple accounts.
To solve this problem, Groups were used. Each individual website user could be assigned to one or many groups and then each group was assigned to exactly one account. This also resolved the issue for needing only logged in users to access the general downloads, all users were assigned to a group who could access that page.
When we asked the client about how much file storage they would need, they really didn’t know, but thought likely quite a bit and that it would grow. They also needed to have users securely upload and download from just their own account.
We were dealing with regular people who were used to dragging & dropping, clicking, but not doing much fancier than that.
Announcements & Private Messages
Most online systems for financial matters allow you to message people and receive messages & announcements about your account. The key is that account details aren’t transmitted via email, instead, you receive an email letting you know you have a message.
Both private messages (which were restricted to between admin and regular user) and announcements were added. An admin could message all users of the site via an announcement, or just one user.
Detailed User Guide
It was quite possible that portal admins would go months without setting up a new user account, so documentation on how to set up an account was key. We built a 13-page user guide including screen captures and videos detailing each step in the setup process. We also updated their WordPress dashboard to display the link to the user guide as soon as they signed in.
Since users would also be going a couple of months between visits, we developed several videos for them and provided a lot of helpful links on the site.
The site was delivered on the 6-week timeline and on budget. This boutique investment house now has just what they need to make their documents available to their clients.
Now that the site is delivered, they have both a design document and a portal admin user guide. But, far more importantly, they have trust in the Agency to take care of them moving forward and we’ve been retained to provide regular maintenance and support for the site. It’s a win all around.