In Part 1 and 2 of this series, we’ve talked about what makes a great user experience and how you can build a great user experience while building your analytics, all in pursuit of getting the right data and insights into the hands of your end users as quickly as possible.
Next, you need to ensure your future applications create the same “can’t wait to use it” excitement as the first. So, I spent a bit more time with Desi Reuben-Sealey, our Certified UX Designer in Qlik Consulting Services, who has helped many customers not only design their first app with a great user experience, but also help ensure they had the tools and knowledge to ensure future applications adhered to the same level of standards. Desi called this “UX governance.”
Per Desi, many folks assume establishing a UX governance is about creating a template – put the company logo here, KPI’s there, and only use colors from this palette. But UX governance goes beyond the “look,” and focuses on the “what” and “how.” Remember when we told you that building a great user experience starts by asking “how will you use it” and “are we telling the correct story?” That means you need to start every app with the end user in mind, and realize that not every user group will use and access applications in the same way. It also involves ensuring that the you utilize the same UX principles that helped create that “user’s delight” feeling for all recipients of your solution.
For example, your first app was for the Finance team who mostly works on PCs in the office and needs detailed data. But now, you need to build an app that will be accessed from mobile devices by hundreds of Sales team users and, therefore, needs visual analytics. From a UX perspective, this is a HUGE difference in how you design and build an app, possibly on a different platform, i.e., mobile app versus web app, and all that goes along with how users will access, navigate, and consume the analytics.
Does that mean you should start over with every app? Absolutely not! Instead, do yourself a favor by anticipating and establishing governance that ensures every app will meet the same high standards regardless of platform or device used to access the app.
Desi explained that when he helps customers establish UX governance, after determining the users’ desired look/style and navigation of their analytics, he helps put together the “standards” of how to build future apps based on the need and consumption method. By doing so, if you build apps on multiple platforms – i.e., native, web and phone – then the experience allows the user to move seamlessly between them.
In one case, Desi worked with a customer who had created a great style template. Color schemes, placement on the screen, etc. were well-defined. But unfortunately, with each application the company’s development team lost a bit of direction on what they were trying to accomplish, so much so that the experience of their most recent app felt nothing at all like their first app, and the users were becoming disenchanted.
Desi came in and facilitated a UX workshop. Utilizing what was created for a style template, Desi instead focused on the development aspects of governance. He helped them define the specific web standards that they needed to use with any app, and even helped document how those standards should transfer across different platforms.
Since then, the internal development team has continued to develop applications following the now-established UX governance, and so far, been very successful. In fact, to quote the customer:
“What Desi managed to accomplish during a two day UX workshop was remarkable. When he arrived, the project was weighed down and unsure which direction to head. With his guidance and expertise Desi transformed the project into something that was positive, user focused and intent on delivering a simple and purposeful application.”
Hopefully, this series of articles has given you some insights on how you can create a great user experience. However, if you feel you need some help from our team of UX consultants, or just want to learn more about Qlik Consulting, visit qlik.com/consulting.