"User-friendly" is in the eye of the beholder

Just like beauty, the idea of software being “user-friendly” is in the eye of the beholder.

Very often when I talk with clients about what they need from a new AMS, they’ll say something to the effect of “It has to be user-friendly.”

I agree.

But what does user-friendly look like? Well, that depends on who you ask.

And therein lies the problem.

Asking for “user-friendly” is like asking for pretty. Only the person looking at it can say if it is or is not.

So you have to define what user-friendly means. Does it mean staff can find any piece of data in two clicks? Does it mean that online users don’t have to log on to make a donation? Does it mean that staff can learn the system without training? Or something else entirely?

Like beauty, “user-friendly” is really in the eye of the beholder. So take some time define what it means.

About Wes Trochlil

For over 30 years, Wes has worked in and with dozens of associations and membership organizations throughout the US, ranging in size from zero staff (all-volunteer) to over 700. In that time Wes has provided a range of consulting services, from general consulting on data management issues to full-scale, association-wide selection and implementation of association management systems.

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