Think that, you are in a sales interview with your potential customer and talking about software modules for your product. Probably you are recording or writing all the interview and creating your major task list and so on.. Many times i have been that kind of interviews or meetings, but nobody talks about Quality of the product. Because customer expects a high quality product and do not needs to talk about this. Also sellers/developers gives an undertaking about total quality without talking about this, because quality is the default expect for all people.

For a better usable product, we need to answer these questions;

Q : Does our users can use the application without any training or a short training is enugh?
A : Yes, because forms shows only required data and has a clear and simple design. Also forms helps to users while they are using it.

Q : Does our users likes this application?
A : Yes, because they do not think to much what they can do on a form. Forms focuses users to the aim saves their time.

Q : Does your application prevents user mistakes?
A : Yes, our smart form controls easy to use and helps to user on his/her process.

If you are a developer or in a job related with a software product / project, adding these tasks to your task list will improve your product's quality;

  1. Teach talking to your product : Feedback is a must. Your application must give feedbacks to users, what is doing at that moment.
  2. Talk with your users : Feedbacks need to be same language with users language and same business terms. Avoid using technical terms like "Null not is a value" instead of  "Invalid value for myField" is better.  Also those feedbacks can motivate the users and supports them to complete the business process.
  3. Be clear : All the form elements which contains some text, need to be clear and understandable. For example in Orders form, a button name can be "Submit" but "Save Order" will be better.
  4. Data design : This is a kind of design without using any design tool. For example check the picture below;



    Also contact name emphasized and now it is more easy to find in a form.
     
  5. Group related data : Grouping makes your data more readable and clear.


     
  6. Avoid clutter : User's brain works for all the things on the form, so we can remove clutter like here;


     
  7. Minimize user inputs : If application knows about some information about its user, it can use that informations instead of user. For example if you have a address form and your users generally coming from same city/country, that time you can set these fields by default. Or your user logged in, you can fill any user information automatically in any form.
    Also using selectable form controls better than typing. For example selecting country then state then city, better than typing.
  8. You are here : A good navigation is always better. Say to your users you are here now and if your applcation has deep hierarchical steps, using breadcrumbs is a good solution.

  9. Consistency is important : Decide your style and use always same style in whole off the application. All the form controls must have same visuality for a user, because user can estimate the next step or easyly finds what he/she needs.
  10. Use your product : One of the better way to understand what your users think about your product or how can they use easyly your product, use your product yourself. You will see which steps are easy to use or not. Also this will be a good end user test for your product.
  11. Always there is a better way : Review your product and determine the adversities and complexities. Re-think about that places and think about how to improve the usuablitiy for your product.

 

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