Saturday, December 23, 2006

Improving applications upsets users?

As many bloggers go quiet over the holiday season it gives me a good chance to catch up some reading on blogs I have missed over the last few weeks while working through the recent product release at Global 360.

A nice series of posts on Tyner Blain caught my eye: Going Agile, 10 Mistakes. Its interesting for me since unknowingly, the R&D groups I work with are so experienced and have so much background working together that agile techniques are implicit to much of what they do. They are ideally placed to head away from the 18 month major product release cycles they have been tied to in the past and towards a more incremental enhancement program.

The interesting challenge would be how customers react to products that can constantly deliver more benefits and features. On the web, product constantly update and expect their users to keep up. In the corporate world, users gain much of their effectiveness and efficiency from complete familiarity with the software applications they use.

I wonder if anyone has experience of this. Can the constantly improving world of the web translate to corporate applications? Do small incremental improvements help users adapt gradually to changes, or do they constantly unsettle and upset?

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1 comment:

Colin said...

Best of the season Phil.
My thought on this, and with some experience, is that the issue doesn't lie with customers. They are fine with change if its good change, and if it is not, then don't do it.
No I am more concerned about the Banks ability to absorb the change. Banks are large companies, with necessary standard processes, and training. The change requirements for the people and process parts of large Banks hinder change.