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Re: Who is using multiple personae for one job role?

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  • mhpries
    ... consumer ... Not just a hunch, but a more subtle difference here that should be considered. When people talk about corporate software, it is not always
    Message 1 of 41 , Nov 30, 2006
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      --- In agile-usability@yahoogroups.com, "Desilets, Alain"
      <alain.desilets@...> wrote:
      >
      > > I think statements like "corporate people like roles while
      consumer
      > > products like personas" have more exceptions than factual
      > > background,
      > > but let's go with it. It's your hunch, after all...

      Not just a hunch, but a more subtle difference here that should be
      considered. When people talk about "corporate" software, it is not
      always clear if they are talking about consumer software that is mass-
      marketed to corporations and small businesses (think Microsoft
      Office; Quick Books, etc.) or custom software developed for a
      specific corporation.

      If it is custom software, then I think there is a much stronger push
      to work through user roles because corporate clout or culture tends
      to uniformity (think US Army or old-time Arthur Andersen) or the psuh
      to work through roles happens because the people developing the
      software do not get access to enough users within the organization to
      find variations. Or the project deadline is so tight, diffenreces
      have to be stereotyped away.

      Often such projects are tightly controlled by a small set of people
      who are not necessarily in touch with day-to-day users but dealing
      off their own personal quirks and opinions of what is usable.

      Software written for business use but marketed through channels that
      touch a wide range of businesses are much more like consumer software
      and really must think in terms of personnas.
    • Josh Seiden
      ... I do find that I use personas less often in the enterprise and more often in the consumer world, but I would attribute this to the relative
      Message 41 of 41 , Dec 1, 2006
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        > > With corporate software, there is an existing
        > > structure that groups people by function,
        > > education, and those introduce a minimal amount
        > > of uniformity (again, I'm not saying that
        > > individual differences don't exist within
        > > a same work unit... Just saying that there
        > > is a bit more uniformity there).

        > Look closely at anything and uniformity disappears.
        > ( http://
        > www.despair.com/individuality.html )


        I do find that I use personas less often in the
        enterprise and more often in the consumer world, but I
        would attribute this to the relative "horizontal-ness"
        of the system under consideration, rather than the
        "enterprise-ness" of system.

        When you have a very vertical application in the
        enterprise context, roles can go a long way and are
        often a good enough model to use--especially when
        combined with feedback from actual users.

        But when the system is more horizontal--a phone system
        perhaps--personas become more useful because the role
        "phone user" doesn't get you very far.

        I agree with Jared that the closer you look, the less
        uniformity you have. Thus "horizontal-ness" is
        something of an artificial distinction. If are
        motivated to look at any vertically-defined role
        closely enough, if you spend enough money and time,
        you can make a vertical role as horizontal as you
        would like.

        So what determines "horizontal-ness?" I would argue
        that (in terms of deciding whether you use personas as
        a design tool) you consider both the intrinsic
        differences of behavior and motivation, but also the
        extrinsic factors: namely the relative value of
        investigating those differences on any given project,
        and the relative motivation of the client to pay for
        that value.

        JS
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