Thursday, September 27, 2012

It's rarely just a simple checkbox

My client said today, "We want to add a simple checkbox to ask the user [another question]."

Okay...let's see how simple it is!

Q: Do the users understand the wording of the question?
A: Not sure, but they should

Q: Where does that answer get stored in our destination system?
A: Nowhere, today

Q: Does the system storing the question have the same development cycle as the front end?
A: Nope

Q: What do you do with that information?
A: We would like to send it downstream to another group to save them time, but otherwise, it's not part of our core process

Q: How do the users provide that information today?
A: Using a different system that is part of the downstream process

Q: How does it differ from the [similar question you already ask]?
A: Not sure, because we don't know why we ask [similar question]

Aha. So, our simple checkbox needs:
  • Design specification
  • User testing
  • Development
  • QA Verification
  • Integration analysis
  • Release planning across systems
  • Destination system revisions (design, development and QA verification)
  • Downstream system revisions (design, development and QA verification)
  • Education and coordination with other groups
  • Process changes for the users
...and may not even need to be asked to begin with.


Monday, September 17, 2012

All your system problem may belong to us.

In reply to an e-mail I sent explaining I could not order from a web site:

So, in other words, we aren't saying the system does or does not have problems. But we're fixing them.