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I worked at many organization, few of my old employers developed old system for clients which is running from more than 5 years and work perfect. They do not care about any user experience(design, usability), color combination, text, performance. But they just want functionality. so is it good practice? i know its not good practice, but i want to know your idea about design. I need answer to following three questions.

  1. Why they want to use old design instead of new technologies and new design

  2. How can i convince them to develop new GUI

  3. Best practices for creating admin/client/franchises tracking sites.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

From my own experience I have found that an application can outlive the developers that wrote it and in this case, it is often the users who know the system better than the team that is supporting it. The problem is then that when the user has problems there is no one better off to help.

I recently wrote an internal application and with this in mind, one of my main goals was making it as friendly as possible to the user, so that it didn't rely on training or knowledge passed via Chinese whispers over the years. This involved making the interface easy to use, consistent design throughout and lots of helpful paragraphs embedded into the page.

Hopefully now when I'm long gone and another developer takes over, they can work out the interface quite easily. The added bonus is that there shouldn't be as many support queries to begin with.

Edit to answer the other points: If the system works, the client won't want to spend money on making it newer. If you are upgrading the system anyway, then why do you want to use new technologies? If it is to speed up development of new features, then you can tell the clients that.

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+1 for - the client won't want to spend money on making it newer –  pir abdul wakeel Jun 19 '11 at 18:20
  1. They don't want to fix it, since it ain't broken.
  2. Point out that usability work actually involves functionality and not just eye-candy. Increased usability will lead to increased efficiency.
  3. Usability engineering! Short description: Establish some measurable goals for the ux-factors of the system and work towards these goals by iterative design (prototype and evaluate, over and over).
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But in my case usability is only design and performance –  pir abdul wakeel Jun 20 '11 at 4:36

I'm afraid this is one of the fundamental issues in educating a client as to the relevance of the user's expereience with their product - ie a failure to understand (or even be aware of) the benefits of analyzing and providing a good (or great) user experience.

Getting buy-in from a client, or from management, or marketing is very hard if they do not see the bigger picture and the value of extra investment in ux and usability testing. For many, so long as the software achieves the desired task, for the lowest cost and shortest time, that is all that matters. Why spend more and take longer, when the final outcome is software that does the same? In addition, if a company has had to fight to win or negotiate on a contract, there will have inevitably been compromises made. Sadly, this area is one of the first to suffer when things get tight.

You especially see this where there is little or no competition - in a niche market, or a very technical or scientific area - why bother doing more than you need to get the job done? That is why there is so much bad software around. Shoe string budgets, tried and tested technologies, cheaper development costs, fast turnarounds - they are all important factors, but at what cost when!

It has for a long time been the case that the field of technical software development and the field of user interface design (and the associated ux/usability) are non-overlapping. So many developers hate the ui, and those who love the ui are less keen on the core development. When hiring a team of developers, management easily forget the need to hire the appropriate range of skills.

The thing is, incorporating a great user experience does not involve immediately apparent or tangible assets. The return on investment is unclear and for many management staff, whose jobs may be on the line, or who need to impress, their ability to produce deliverables quickly and cheaply is what counts the most.

It very much falls on the ui/ux/usability evangelists (and we do seem to have something of a passion in this field) to educate management/marketing/board/stakeholders to see the benefits, but if there's no-one in the company to do this who has an impact on decisions internally - that can be near impossible.

However, all is not bad. The influence of a good ux is being understood by more and more companies, largely as mobile devices and websites are separated by their experience of use, as opposed to the features incoporated. UX is rapidly starting to become a great selling point over the competition. It's taking a long time getting there, but the overall situation is improving and improving fast.

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