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Julien Boisserie posted the picture below in his blog post En quête de satisfaction 2015. It resonated with me very much and I have to reshare.


I think this picture speaks volumes about design (or actually bad/inefficient design). So many times myself and other developers focus too intently on a problem, enhancement or feature and don't step back to look at the larger picture. We think "man, we nailed this. It is going to work awesome and people are going to love it!" Then shortly after implementing, a trail around the solution starts to appear. We spent time and effort working on the solution for what? If customers are going around what we implemented then we likely missed the mark

Now to be my own devil's advocate, code cannot account for everything and sometimes things need to be left to governance and/or policy & procedure. That needs to be weighed in as part of the discussion when coming up with a solution. Do we need a technical solution or a governance solution? Many times my team has been asked to create solutions to address people problems with technology. Guess what happened? Basically the picture above. No amount of technical design was going to replace having a police officer there.


I mention this with Product Managers and my fellow developers in mind whether they are customers, partners or BMC. We might be building the most awesome thing to us but if the customer doesn't think so then we wasted our time and the customer typically gets frustrated or maybe even worse, lose respect for us because we overlooked the obvious holes that they easily found.


In the case that technical solutions cannot/should not account for all customer behaviours then there needs to be sufficient documentation as to how to use this thing, what is the recommended practice and why did we even develop this thing / why does it work this way. Admittedly I don't think it is reasonable to literally have these things in the image above. That is the physical, common-sense world where anybody over the age of 5 should realize that solution is there to keep me from getting hit by a fast moving bus. For us we are making tools to help our business be relevant in its industry. Businesses are much more complex than crossing the road.




Relevant to:

BMC Remedy AR System

Using Communities

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Index of Jason's Quick Tip Blog Posts