Have you made a serious investment in developing an analytics tool, but nobody’s actually using it? And if they are, it’s painful? Human-Centred Design makes the key difference.
As anyone in the field of human factors knows, this goes way beyond nice screen layouts and colours. The usability and utility of a tool goes all the way back to what tasks (somebody) thought you need to do, and how you should do them — and who gets to define that? All too often, the key stakeholders — the staff who are expected to use the tool — do not have a meaningful voice in the design process. So the right data’s not there, the tool’s not integrated with the other systems they use, the designer had a very odd mental model about how you think about your work, and basically, the whole experience is far from pleasant. We all have those systems in our lives… Potentially a lot of investment wasted.
And then there are the software tools that feel just right. That’s not by accident or luck. There’s a design science and a craft to creating that user experience.
The Experiencing Data podcast hosted by Brian O’Neill is an invaluable source of insight into how human-centred design helps ensure that data/analytics tools are used, and used well. Brian O’Neill interviews people in diverse roles and organisations (from the tech giants to startups) on how this plays out for them, with many compelling examples and insights into the practical realities of making this happen on the ground. Past interviewees include Nancy Duarte, Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic and Tom Davenport.
CIC’s strapline is human-centred data science for education, which is why our work sits at the intersections of Data Science, Learning Science, Computer Science and Human-Computer Interaction. So we’re proud to point you to the Experiencing Data interview with CIC’s director, in which he explains to a general audience how these issues play out in education. Enjoy this, and the many other interviews…