Manager Navigation Feedback

I have to agree with Tut, if only a small handful of users have preference differences, huge volume of users do not have the spare time to follow the forum and be aware of a decided UI change, I think the forum will be bombarded with users asking where tabs have gone.
The only way to please everyone is to let the user set heading tab names and let them allocate each sub tab to heading tab but then you loose consistency and no longer be able to use the terminology of manager to help users troubleshoot.
There are a small amount of simple changes I can see that would improve things but the best simple improvement would be to reorder the standard tab bar without causing repercussions.
Lubos will decide the best approach for his software, that’s if all this chat hasn’t put him off the whole idea altogether!


@wornout Your approach has already been rejected by the developer on the grounds that every Manager would look different. Consistency in layout of the program is very important. Everything needs to remain in the same place and order. In principle the idea is great, but not so in practice.

@Patch Glad that the current design is working perfectly for you, but you are not the only person that uses this program and you would be in the minority here with so few tabs. The rest of us that have a lot more tabs do need a solution. Lastly the solution would not waste space. In fact, it will save space on even your system.

@AJD You misunderstood what the 7/3 rule is about. This is not about making Manager look like other accounting programs. I definitely don’t want that. The problem with most accounting programs is the navigation is way too complicated. The 7/3 rule is about website navigation design in general. This applies to websites not accounting programs.

Your use of Accounts Receivable just through. It was only when @Ealfardan posted that I realised what you were saying. I have to admit I like what has been proposed by the two of you.

I disagree that the program should use Names that strengthen users knowledge of accounting. Manager’s target market is small businesses like myself where the focus is on dealing with clients and suppliers - i.e buying and selling things. We are not accountants and most are not interested in being accountants. We just want something to use to pay the bills, invoice customers, record the money and manage our inventory. So basically all the operations. @Ealfardan and @lubos know this, which is why Manager is currently developed with very simple tab names - which really makes the program easy to use.

@Tut I am used to the fact that you are usually resistant to new ideas unless it’s something that you personally agree with. The simple reality is that the three people who come up with the categories are as far as I can see in unanimous agreement on the first six tabs - Money, Sales, Purchases, Inventory and Operations, Employees and Assets - there is pretty much united consensus on those tabs. You are focusing on the fact that there is disagreement mainly on @Ealfardan’s Accounting and Finance Tab. Having said that, we don’t disagree - you can’t design this perfectly in one go - it needs debate and discussion as everyone has different points of view.

You are also conflating three different proposed options by three different people. You won’t have Purchase, Suppliers and Accounts Payable. What @Ealfardan has proposed I believe is - I won’t say idiot proof - but nearly so. The only tab I don’t agree on is accounting and finance because they are more unusual items. Please read @Ealfardan recommended list and you will see that he has organised everything by business department and very cleverly done too.

Using his example, there is no difficulty in knowing that receipts come under Money tab. why would Supplier ever be under Bank Accounts?

If you don’t like the solution, then please propose a solution that actually fixes the problem this topic is trying to solve.

@Wornout We are well aware that we are not the only users. We are however tired of being ignored about the ever growing tab list problem and we are trying to find a solution in the hope that we can present a packaged deal to sell to @lubos as he will make the final decision and I acknowledge that he is not sold on the idea yet. You and and @Tut and @Patch may not be affected this by this issue and good for you. You are only objecting to the proposed solution on the basis of how you use the program and not considering that other people that use the program have a problem with the tab length. I am certainly not ignoring the needs of others, I just feel that “us” the people who have lots of tabs have been ignored on this issue for years and I would like this problem fixed.

Also what I am proposing is based on many studies of website development that indicate how users work optimally on a website. So this is not just my personal opinion.

I believe that what I am proposing will make things simpler for everyone - you included and fix a number of gui related issues. Nobody here is ignoring your opinion - we are just trying to find a solution that will work for all users, not 20% of Manager users as the vast majority I am sure how a long list of tabs. My business is small and even I have 25 tabs, half of which do nothing all year round.

@AJD Thank you for your support on this. You have explained the purpose of the forum and this topic.

@itmoto Your argument and other’s are based on the assumption that this issue only affects a small minority of users. Do you have evidence to support this? My suspicion is that this affects the majority.
I agree with your concern about changing the structure of the program - This should be announced ahead of release if implemented. That is not as reason not to change it, but more highlights that changes like these are not announced.

Well I don’t know about Lubos, but I am starting to get put off by this disucssion as the people who clearly have a problem like the suggested change whereas the people who only have a couple of tabs naturally want no change. My question will be, why should the people with lots of tabs suffer the design flaws to please what I suspect is the minority who only have a few tabs - because this is where I see all the objections coming from - the attitude that “my system works perfectly now, so I don’t want it changed” as if they are the only users.

Sorry if I ranted to anyone. This design flaw has ticked me off for years and I am just really keen to get the problem resolved once and for all. It is now in the developer’s hands. He can say yay or nay and come up with a better solution to address our issues.

What is that supposed to mean? :unamused:

Good point, and that probably is going to be a problem.

But what if:

  • All tabs come in a default group creatively called: All Tabs, which is the only group that ships with manager.
    *You can’t delete or rename All Tabs group.
  • You can’t move tabs away from All Tabs groups, you can only delete them.
  • Users are allowed to create their own groups and name them however they wish. These groups are stored within the user records for all businesses. So they are not related to a single business, just the users.

What if a business doesn’t have one of the tabs that were grouped? No problem it doesn’t need to show in the group for that particular business.

This way if you want flat navigation you already have it. If you want to group things, you can as well. Don’t like the name you can changes. Got lost? Just expand All Tabs.

I think the problem for a long time is many users only view changes according to how it will affect their businesses. The resistance I had to getting the Status of Sales Quotes and Sales Orders into the ideas category was unbelievable and I wasn’t asking for anything that wasn’t standard in every other accounting program I have seen. People do view things from their workflow point of view. I have never understood why so many people resisted the status of quotes idea. How anyone is supposed to manage a sales funnel without it is beyond me.

Your suggestion will have the effect of pleasing both camps, but I agree with Lubos that changing the order,names etc of tabs will not work. Because I will come onto the forum and say I can access Money and you will say you can’t access Cash and Bank - because we use different names. It would be a nightmare to support.

Anyway I am going to try and stay out of this topic now, because I am not convinced there is anything further to add to the proposal. We have made the proposal. My only suggestion would be that @lubos could create a test download with the proposed structure as it will be far easier for people to look at it visually before saying it doesn’t work. A visual representation would far better explain the proposal than trying to explain in words.

My two cents as a user: I am strongly opposed to this suggestion. The good website design arguments proposed in the first post are totally consumer / content consumption oriented.

Manager is not a “website” but an accounting program. Gmail, Google Drive and many many other powerful applications do not follow the supposed “good website design” as outlined in the first post. Manager is used to get things done with lots of input/output as opposed to the browsing/reading/consuming which is done on a regular consumer facing website.

Since this suggestion is entirely based on taste and opinion, I will share mine. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Learn to use as you learn to use any other powerful application. The dumbing down of UX is about making consumers feel familiar with an interface and lower abandonment. Manager does not have an abandonment issue because it is not consumer oriented. As such, the program needs to be learned and can then be used easily and seamlessly. The tabs have never bothered me and I am very fast with using manager and always find the tab I want without having to drill down in menus. Also, the tabs can be collapsed which moves them out of the way for more screen real estate.

An app like manager is about rapid input/output and switching, so hiding tabs would just add time to the workflow for no other use than looking “clean”. I rather use an efficient product that I have learned than a clean but less powerful product that is easy to use out of the box. My suggestion, learn manager and get used to its navigation and you will soon forget the tabs even exist.

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Exactly. Look and feel is a determining factor in whether users stay or go shopping elsewhere. Many (if not most) people cannot concentrate when they have a large number of things in front of them. That’s why the tidy up their desks, rooms, desktops before working.

You can call it dumb and fight it and you may have a point but then you will lose them as your customers. And there’s a lot of them.

I personally never clicked on a tab for at least a year, I use the browser search function to locate everything and I am happy about it and I couldn’t do it otherwise. But most other users don’t use keyboards and having a lot of options only confuses them, you cannot use that against them! They’re paying customers and they want to make their lives easy. Not saying change things, just provide alternatives.

Now another common fallacy is asking the user: Why have so many tabs open?

To that my answer is that every tab has a unique and important function, otherwise the question should be why is there so many tabs to begin with?

I appreciate your point of view, but I don’t agree. It is far faster to have 8 tabs and you click in one and then click once again to get your destination than to have 25 tabs and have to constantly scroll up and down to find the tab you are looking for and in addition, several of them barely used wasting precious screen retail space. There is nothing efficient about the current tab structure.

Your use of Gmail as an example does not encourage me. Terrible design is all I can say. I hate Gmail.

Obama made a very interesting statement once. He said he only has three choices of suits to wear or something like that. The reason is because there are too many options, too many choices. So he doesn’t want to spend energy agonising what to wear that day. That’s why people want things simplified. We have less time to learn things, less time to do things, too many decisions to make etc.

I don’t consider it dumbing things down. I think it’s about enabling people to focus on the things that matter. For me, I am interested in ordering and paying from my suppliers and selling and receiving money from my clients. I don’t want to have to spend time learning to be an accountant. That’s what I have an accountant for.

That’s why I like Manager because it targets businesses like me. It keeps things simple allowing me to focus my time on running my business not wasting it having to learn how to do accounting. Lubos understands this and has always taken great care to keep names user friendly and simple and its very easy for non accountants to use.

One thing that I have noticed with every single person objecting is that they don’t provide a solution to the problems being experienced by people like myself nor do they explain the logic of having say a Folder Tab that might be used once a year. wasted retail space.

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Most used at the top, least used at the bottom, simple.

There’s one :point_up: :grinning:

I use the cloud edition of In a number of administrations, the customer does part of the administrative work, such as creating sales invoices.
Because the cloud version is used (and with it a web browser), I can create AND fix multiple tabs in the webbrowser.
So, for example, for my customer I have a web browser tab locked for the Summary, the Sales Invoices and the Customers in the web browser.

Using webbrowser Brave it looks like this:

In this way, the user immediately has the necessary tabs available, even after restarting the web browser.
Also, the user only has to focus on those tabs, and does not have to worry about all the Tabs on the left side of the screen in
Tabs are now minimised:

So now there is more space on the screen for the data for the sales invoice, for example.

In practice, this works very well.

But as far as I know, this method is only possible with the server and cloud version of

Actually, you could do exactly the same thing with the desktop edition by opening multiple instances in a browser.

I appreciate the feedback and I know all of you want to make Manager better.

I accept the criticism that if business has a lot of tabs, the constant scrolling is unbearable. So I came up with the following improvement in the latest version (21.4.64)

If left navigation fits the screen, then it will look normal like before.

If it doesn’t fit the screen vertically, then Manager will adapt and make it more compact.


@lubos, the closer spacing is so convenient, I suggest making it the default. Font size does not change, so readability is not affected. And the sudden switch in spacing can be distracting if you are resizing a window.