Research: The evolution of enterprise software UX (TechRepublic Premium)
This archived TechRepublic Premium report, originally published in May 2016, is available for free to registered TechRepublic members. For all the latest research reports, 100+ ready-made policies, IT job descriptions, and more, check out TechRepublic Premium.
From the report:
Enterprise software is used across businesses to perform a wide range of tasks: financial tracking and calculations, big data assessment, conducting staff-related operations, performing messaging functions and more. It could accurately be described as the glue which holds a business together.
Like all technology, enterprise software continues to evolve, but it is relatively unique in that often disparate objectives and varying needs can produce a decrease in functionality and usability for many users. As consumer software continues to get more intuitive, helpful and fun, some enterprise software instances remain mired in confusing menus, tedious workflows and unhelpful output.
Jordan Koschei wrote in an article on alistapart.com titled “UX for the Enterprise” that “design is essential to shedding the excess and building better, leaner, and more human organizations.”
Koschei states that flexibility, understanding the company culture and understanding its vernacular are major priorities for enterprise software development. He feels UX developers should “design for the end user, not the client,” and advised:
“Conduct your stakeholder interviews to understand and agree on your client’s business goals, but don’t forget to gather user and empirical data too… unlike consumers who need an incentive to ll out a survey or participate in an usability study, enterprise users have an inherent investment in the end product—setting aside some time
to answer your questions is part of their job … a successful enterprise UX project considers the users’ needs, the clients’ goals, and the organization’s priorities. The best user experience sits at the intersection of these concerns … the best design flourishes within well-defined boundaries.”
TechRepublic Premium conducted a survey regarding enterprise software to examine how the user experience – or desires related thereto – is guiding and transforming enterprise software. We explored the history of design participation, criteria for enterprise software satisfaction and areas of frustration. In short, we wanted to look at what’s working and what needs improvement as far as the user experience goes, and whether user input is paying dividends in the final product.
To read results from this survey, download the full report.