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Why ignoring the end-user makes you seem incompetent by Toni Bowers, subtitled "IT product developers who don't try to understand the needs of end-users are doomed to fail", is a really terrific article, IMO. Bowers says, "The recent high-profile fiasco of the healthcare.gov website has reminded me of an issue I’ve seen more and more of lately, and that is: a disregard for customer service." More from Bowers:
Since IT personnel won’t be the users of, say, a new cms, they can’t differentiate between “it would be great if we had this capability…” and “We have to be able to do this.” So, they ignore most of what they hear when gathering needs requirements—and believe me, being ignored is one horrible customer experience-- and they plod along creating a product that is technically functional but lacking practical usability.
So what can IT do to avoid this? Bowers offers a lot of advice. My favorites:
That second bullet seems to blow a lot of IT teams' minds, at least in my experience. I'm not a techie - I don't know how to program. But I do know what I want, as an end-user, out of a system. I've had some IT folks try to shut me out of the development process - and then they are stunned when I reject what they've developed to date. I've also had IT teams balk at beta testing with people that will actually use the system.
What do you think?
-=-=-=-=-=- Jayne Cravens Author, The LAST Virtual Volunteering Guidebook
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