How important is UX in software development?

Por: Pedro César Tebaldi Gomes em 16.09.2015

User experience when using applications

When we encounter new software with which we must work, we unconsciously search for references from other interfaces with which we’ve dealt to interact in the best possible way. Colors, formats, language and placement of buttons are some points responsible for generating a good — or bad — experience.

The concept of User Experience (or UX), it is just that. Providing a positive experience for a client goes way beyond the layout. Continue reading this article to understand more about UX and what its importance is in software development.

 

Definition of User Experience (UX)

As the name suggests, the term user experience involves the feelings of a person in the interaction with a given system, software or website. These feelings are both emotional — perception of beauty, for example — and practical — promptness, responsiveness and effectiveness of the system.

There is a standard that regulates the UX, the ISO 9241-210, that defines the User Experience as “a person’s perceptions and responses that result from the use or anticipated use of a product, system or service”. Generally speaking, it is the feeling that one experiences when using a system.

 
With an optimized interface, users can perform tasks more easily and this can introduce several benefits. An employee can finish their job more quickly, for example. Or, in the case of e-commerce, an optimized interface allows consumers to close a purchase in a very simple way.

In software development, the positive points are on both sides, for both the company that produces it as well as for the users. When software allows users to achieve better results in a more simple, fast and/or economic way, the selling points are in numbers.

This a makes the lives of both the sellers and of the support team a lot easier, which can help users to achieve better results, more easily. Moreover, satisfied customers share with their network of relationship about their experiences with a good product!

 

Start right to do better

It is worth remembering that the cost to fix a mistake after a software is terminated is much greater than to avoid it in the first place. In addition, you can save up to half the time spent on rework when adopting UX practices.

 

How to apply the UX in software development

To get the best results when developing a software it is necessary to engage the UX professionals from the beginning. It is vital to permeate the planning, analysis, development and post-release. Everything to ensure better effectiveness.

 

In planning

It is important that the UX professionals understand the software and its goals. Only then it is possible to apply the knowledge and start correctly, instead of correcting after already having the software completed.

 

In the analysis

The professional should reverse the way analysts see things and think like a user. How to make the software usability more intuitive?

 

In the development

In this stage, the professionals must follow procedures to ensure that everything that has been proposed in the two early stages is duly fulfilled by the developers. So the company avoids rework and optimizes time and resources.

 

On post-release

Once ready, the UX professionals follow the first tests with users in order to correct possible problems and detect any possibility of improvement. That’s the difference between a good and an excellent software!

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