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An industrial case study of usability evaluation in market-driven packaged software development

Natt och Dag, Johan LU ; Regnell, Björn LU ; Madsen, Ofelia S and Aurum, Aybüke (2001) In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (HCII'2001) 1. p.425-429
Abstract
In market-driven software development it is crucial to produce the best product as quickly as possible in order to reach customer satisfaction. Requirements arrive at a high rate and the main focus tends to be on the functional requirements. The functional requirements are important, but their usefulness relies on their usability, which may be a rewarding competitive means on its own. Existing methods help software development companies to improve the usability of their product. However, companies that have little experience in usability still find them to be difficult to use, unreliable, and expensive. In this study we present results and experiences on conducting two known usability evaluations, using a questionnaire and a heuristic... (More)
In market-driven software development it is crucial to produce the best product as quickly as possible in order to reach customer satisfaction. Requirements arrive at a high rate and the main focus tends to be on the functional requirements. The functional requirements are important, but their usefulness relies on their usability, which may be a rewarding competitive means on its own. Existing methods help software development companies to improve the usability of their product. However, companies that have little experience in usability still find them to be difficult to use, unreliable, and expensive. In this study we present results and experiences on conducting two known usability evaluations, using a questionnaire and a heuristic eval-uation, at a large software development company. We have found that the two methods complement each other very well, the first giving scientific measures of usability attributes, and the second revealing actual usability deficiencies in the software. Although we did not use any usability experts, evaluations performed by company employees produced valuable results. The company, who had no prior experience in usability evaluation, found the results both useful and meaningful. We can conclude that the evaluators need a brief introduction on usability to receive even better results from the heuristic evaluation, but this may not be required in the initial stages. Much more essential is the support from every level of management. Usability engi-neering

is cost effective and does not require many resources. However, without direct management support, usability engi-neering efforts will most likely be fruitless. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding
publication status
published
subject
in
Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (HCII'2001)
volume
1
pages
425 - 429
publisher
Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
4e487dee-cb7f-4054-9fc8-542fddb72d1e (old id 526402)
date added to LUP
2007-09-24 09:08:05
date last changed
2016-04-16 10:17:05
@misc{4e487dee-cb7f-4054-9fc8-542fddb72d1e,
  abstract     = {In market-driven software development it is crucial to produce the best product as quickly as possible in order to reach customer satisfaction. Requirements arrive at a high rate and the main focus tends to be on the functional requirements. The functional requirements are important, but their usefulness relies on their usability, which may be a rewarding competitive means on its own. Existing methods help software development companies to improve the usability of their product. However, companies that have little experience in usability still find them to be difficult to use, unreliable, and expensive. In this study we present results and experiences on conducting two known usability evaluations, using a questionnaire and a heuristic eval-uation, at a large software development company. We have found that the two methods complement each other very well, the first giving scientific measures of usability attributes, and the second revealing actual usability deficiencies in the software. Although we did not use any usability experts, evaluations performed by company employees produced valuable results. The company, who had no prior experience in usability evaluation, found the results both useful and meaningful. We can conclude that the evaluators need a brief introduction on usability to receive even better results from the heuristic evaluation, but this may not be required in the initial stages. Much more essential is the support from every level of management. Usability engi-neering<br/><br>
is cost effective and does not require many resources. However, without direct management support, usability engi-neering efforts will most likely be fruitless.},
  author       = {Natt och Dag, Johan and Regnell, Björn and Madsen, Ofelia S and Aurum, Aybüke},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {425--429},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0x8a8f358)},
  series       = {Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (HCII'2001)},
  title        = {An industrial case study of usability evaluation in market-driven packaged software development},
  volume       = {1},
  year         = {2001},
}