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Propel's Winter '23 Release: UI for Tomorrow’s Product Company

With the Winter ‘23 release, the Propel platform will be based primarily on the Lightning Web Components (LWC) technology, allowing for more flexibility, customization, and automation.

In Propel’s release for fall of 2022, the platform is moving primarily to Salesforce’s revolutionary user interface Lightning Web Components (LWC). 

With LWC, users get a best-in-class user experience that is tailored to their needs. They can get things done faster leading to better user engagement. What’s more, all this can be achieved using a no-code approach. 

For a more detailed dive into LWC, we explore all the ins and outs in our blog post What is Lightning Web Components, and Why is it a Gamechanger for Modern User Interface?.

Without further ado, let’s take a tour of what’s coming in our release!

1. Composability

As Gartner recently predicted, by year-end 2025, 30% of available PLM applications will be built on top of composable technologies. 

The report goes on to explain that “composable architectures work best with open APIs and low-code application platform visual software development environments that enable enterprise developers and citizen developers to drag and drop application components, connect them together, and create mobile or web apps.”

In other words, the exact functionality of Lightning Web Components (LWC), Salesforce’s user interface framework. The Propel solution is built on Salesforce, and has been since our inception in 2015—quick math gives us a 10-year head start!

Clicks, not Code

The platform is built to be extremely user-friendly, meaning that any functionality a business user needs, they can create themselves—with no programming languages required. 

All of this begins with the Lightning App Builder, a no-code tool for customizing Propel’s UI. From here the users can establish any interface functions they need to perform including building dashboards, setting up automated workflows, performing specific searches, checklists, and more.

Key features include drag-and-drop components explicitly created for Propel users as well as standard components from Salesforce. Plus, heightened role-based customization, such as “Set component visibility” to make certain components visible to only you or your team, or based on the category of the record.

Get organized with multiple tabs 

In our new release, you’ll be able to split up and organize your work functions across multiple tabs, which are customizable and rearrangeable.

In the below configuration, the “Risk Analysis” related fields are grouped together under the Risk Analysis custom tab. 

Tabs can be customized to include a Report at the record level, as seen in the right-hand panel of the screenshot below. Use this feature to bring in relevant information from other sources in context.

Additionally, you could include a “Rich Text” component to type up Instructions to end users based on their role, approval status, etc.

Finally, much like the components themselves, you can set each of your tabs to either “show” or “hide” to a specific group or to users in certain roles.

Configure Your Actions 

For each record type or user profile, you can now configure the actions entirely according to the needs of your business. Show or hide, rearrange, and even rename the actions—all using clicks not code.

Build custom actions using Screen Flow

It goes even further than simply configuration—you can also quickly and easily build your own custom actions! All clicks, no code. Here’s a quick how-to:

2. Be more productive

Try the new BOM Navigator

The BOM Navigator enables quick navigation to see the details of a part without launching new browser tabs or windows. An overview of the structure of the BOM will show up in a left-hand panel, helping you navigate through all the detail in one glance.

The panel structure is expandable, revealing more “branches” (shown below). The path will also appear above the main display screen, helping you to backtrack when needed.

(And don’t worry—if you’re someone who will miss having everything open in new tabs, the option is still available in one convenient click at the top of your screen.)

Change Made Easy

It’s a new day. No more scrambling to find all the processes and parts affected by an ECO! We’ve created a new sidebar allowing users to view and navigate all the Affected Items in one place.

Plus, powerful table filtering helps find what you’re looking for fast. Quickly filter all the tables, and narrow it down further with specific criteria. 

And if you find yourself using the same filters over and over again, you can save the filters and column configuration as Table Views for future use!

3. Build your own components

If you ever find yourself with hyper-specific requirements beyond what the aforementioned features encompass, you can always leverage the LWC framework to build your own components. 

There are hundreds of base components in the Salesforce LWC Component library as a jumping off point, and extensive UI design guidelines and best practices available. Mix and match your custom built components with those from Propel and Salesforce. It is really that easy. 

4. Tailor the User Experience to your specific needs

All of the above-mentioned features add up to a hyper-specific role-based user interface. This means the experience is targeted to the user, whether they are a power user (those who spend their whole day on the platform) or a casual user (those less familiar with the terrain).

For instance, many employees use Propel to complete their training requirements. Being occasional users of Propel, they may not be familiar with other features of Propel. The following example shows a Training App that is purpose-built for Training and allows trainees to view their open assignments and complete them.   

Simple, more intuitive, less overwhelming. The name of the game is better user engagement.


On top of all the functions we’ve already mentioned, lightning web components are responsive and can be leveraged to build mobile experiences as well. Plus, you know they’re incredibly secure because of Salesforce’s trusted security coding practices. 

By leveraging the composability of LWC, the Propel platform will step into the future. 

Every new feature is highly customizable, so each individual role can view and manage their own workflows while remaining directly connected to the rest of the stakeholders in the process.

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Post by
Kishore Subramanian
CTO, Propel

Kishore hails from Google, where he was a Sr. Software Engineer. At Google, he most recently worked on a Java/Kotlin library for the Google Assistant and led key areas for the Files Go Android App and Google Web Designer. His previous experience includes senior engineering roles at Motorola Mobility, JackBe and Agile Software.

Fun Fact: Kishore led the team that built Agile PLM's first web-based user interface.

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Kishore Subramanian