There are a couple of applications I have to use at work that are less than user-friendly. One is the system used for performance reviews for my team – this is particularly problematic because I only use it a few times a year and so each time I have to “relearn” how to use it. It’s frustrating, but it has to be done.
I’m not alone. A recent study from CA (formerly Computer Associates) states that the use of web applications is rising, 97% of those surveyed need applications to their job.
24% of survey participants say that they cope with badly performing applications on a daily basis.
Consumers find errors on websites or web applications frustrating, and their expectation of the problem being solved are pretty high – 32% expect it to be solved within 10 minutes.
I’m sure it’s something we all recognise – either as employees or as consumers – we’ve experienced the frustration. But what is the impact?
According to those surveyed the biggest impact is on their productivity (78%), the next two biggest impacts were increased frustration (49%) and decreased job satisfaction (40%).
I recognise that performance refers to the availability and bug-free nature of the web application, and not the usability that I mentioned earlier. However in some ways they’re all part of the same issue. Web applications are now vital tools in the work place, any difficulties in using them impact both the productivity and the job satisfaction of the user.
Suddenly IT is looking like an HR issue.
If your management is calling for people to “work smarter” and increase productivity in this environment, and your HR departments are working to develop (or maintain) an engaged workforce, perhaps looking at key web applications would be a good start.
image from getplaid? via flickr