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Re: The user is always right

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  • Kathy Glur
    Scott, Lots of user observation before the recommendation and after the recommendation confirmed that the items we implemented were the right items. It s a
    Message 1 of 28 , Oct 2, 2008
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      Scott,
      Lots of user observation before the recommendation and after the
      recommendation confirmed that the items we implemented were the
      right items. It's a call center application, so user research is
      pretty cheap.
      Kathy

      --- In agile-usability@yahoogroups.com, Scott Preece <sepreece@...>
      wrote:
      >
      > Hi, Kathy,
      >
      > The notion of always trying to understand the why before
      committing to the how is great. I have a little bit of concern about
      your example, though. Bending the user experience to make it easier
      to implement is a dangerous path; you need to be very sure that
      you're not making the user's job harder or more difficult to
      understand. It may, of course, be that the specifics of the example
      didn't have any issues, but it's a situation where you would
      probably want to test the tasks with users to make sure the new
      capabilities were clear and didn't make it harder for them to
      complete the task the wizard supported.
      >
      > Also, you wouldn't want to go down this route if the added
      capabilities were things you would ever want to do when the wizarded
      process wasn't going on. That is, if they're things you might want
      to do at arbitrary times, building them into the wizard would
      potentially mean you needed to implement all or part of them more
      than once to make them available in different places.
      >
      > [Obviously, I have no idea of the specifics of your applicatio, so
      these are general thoughts that may very well not apply here; in any
      case, figuring out what the customer needs to accomplish is, as you
      said, central to figuring out the best way to do it.]
      >
      > regards,
      > scott
      >
      >
      >
      > ----- Original Message ----
      > From: Kathy Glur <kaglur@...>
      > To: agile-usability@yahoogroups.com
      > Sent: Wednesday, October 1, 2008 8:33:35 AM
      > Subject: [agile-usability] Re: The user is always right
      >
      >
      > > On Sun, 14 Sep 2008 12:29:01 -0400, John wrote:
      >
      > > Agreed. What becomes frustrating is when someone in the business
      > > believes they know what the right answer is to their business
      > > need,and objects to being asked 'why do you want that feature?'.
      >
      > I've been lurking for quite a while and this thread has finally
      > compelled me to respond.
      >
      > The product owners and the users frequently ask for functions that
      > they really don't need. I always ask them what the real issue
      > is...what are they trying to fix with the solution they're
      > proposing. If would I ask them why they wanted it, it would
      > instantly put them on the defensive. By digging into what the
      > problems are, they feel like they're involved in the better
      solution.
      >
      > Here's an example: We have an ordering feature that we handle
      > through a wizard. If the user leaves the wizard, they lose their
      > progress. (We have an architecture that makes it difficult to save
      > progress.) The business came to us and asked us to allow them to
      > save and leave the wizard. I asked them what operations they
      needed
      > to perform when they were needing to save the wizard. They listed
      > three things that were much easier to integrate into the wizard
      than
      > the save function.
      >
      > As usability practitioners, it's our role to listen to what the
      > business wants, observe what the users need (not ask them), and
      then
      > propose the best design to the stakeholders.
      >
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