What do you think of when you hear the term enterprise UX? Designing corporate Human Resources (HR) systems or intranets? Many articles and books for UX professionals focus on designing Web sites and mobile applications for consumers. But what about the silent majority of users in the workplace who are trying to get their job done? Many of them think of enterprise software as the generally sub-par tools that companies force them to use.
However, over the past few years, enterprise UX has started to get more attention from user-experience thought leaders. (There’s even a conference dedicated to it.) But what does enterprise UX actually mean? From what we’ve observed, it seems that there is not yet an agreed-upon definition of this term. This fuels confusion about enterprise UX, why it matters, and what scope it encompasses. Therefore, in our first column on this topic, we’ll
provide a working definition of enterprise UX
describe a few of the many environments in which enterprise UX makes a difference
identify obstacles to designing and developing great enterprise software Read More
The general public is often unaware of enterprise software products. For the UX professionals who create these products, designing for highly specialized users poses unique challenges. The learning curve for a particular domain can be steep because UX designers don’t necessarily have any applicable knowledge about similar domains or products. When UX professionals are working with product teams who know their unique domain much better than they do, it can be particularly difficult to demonstrate the value of User Experience.
What often happens is something like this: Business leaders for an enterprise product bring on UX professionals who have some available bandwidth, but no familiarity with the problem space. They then drop these UX professionals into teams with product managers, developers, testers, and program managers who already know the domain. Such teams often perceive these UX professionals as not adding much value on strategy, up-front research, task analysis, or interaction design because they don’t have the deep product expertise that comes with training and time in the domain. In such cases, the role of User Experience is often limited to making the product somewhat more usable or look better. Read More