Tuesday February 24th, 2009 by Björn Balazs
We were in the lucky situation to conduct a usability-test with seven volunteers of a German company. They are using Tine 2.0 mainly as CRM-Tool to coordinate their sales-department. Consequently they are using contacts, CRM and tasks, but not the other apps of Tine 2.0. All user were regular, but not frequent users of Tine 2.0 and moderately comfortable with computers in general.
The tests were concepted as semi-structured, task-oriented interviews. I lead all interviews, while Conny Weiß was participating as an active observer. He was allowed to ask and answer any questions during the interview.
The scenario was as follows:
- Users had to log-in and explain their general impressions and understanding of Tine 2.0.
- Users had to find and modify an existing contact. Focus of this task was the use of the filter-system as a quick-filter, the short-view of a contact and the modification of an item.
- Users then had to export a list of contacts to .pdf, that had to be composed by a rather complex filter-setting.
- Next they were asked to create a to-do-list which only a certain group of people was allowed to see.
- Finally they were asked to show how they manage a typical task of their daily work with Tine 2.0.
The interviews were very informative. The results were aggregated and transformed into tasks for further development. The detailed results can be found in the bug-tracking-systems of Tine 2.0. Following I will give an overview of the most important findings:
- General understanding of Tine 2.0 is good
All users were able to explain the general concepts of Tine 2.0 and were competent to solve even complex tasks. This encourages us to stay with the chosen general approach of Tine 2.0, namely keeping the general screen-estate, the filter-list-view, the application-pile etc.
- Sometimes Tine 2.0 gets in the users’ way
In some details Tine 2.0 is not enough consistent, predictive or supportive for the user. We have found heaps of these small Usability-Bugs, showing us that we have to be even more precise with all those little things. Examples for this category are:
* The addressbook-container has not been correctly pre-selected when adding a new contact
* Some wording was not understood
* Not sufficient feedback when filtering caused no results
* Number of elements in lists are not configurable
- Notes should be editable
The concept of notes was appreciated by the users, but they wanted notes to be editable and they wanted notes to show up at more then one place.
- No connection between CRM and Tasks
Users had the problem that they cannot see which CRM-Lead a certain task belongs to.
- Use of Right-Mouse-Buttons is confusing
Users were not able to predict where and how they could use the right-mouse-button-menu.
- Selection of a person is confusing
The dialogue to select e.g. the responsible person for a task lead to some irritation for the user.
This is just a short summary of the most important findings. A lot of the issues have already been fixed for the upcoming Tine 2.0 Lara release. All other issues are integrated into the further development schedule.
Summing it up: the user test was well worth it and helped us a lot to loose our expert view and once again see Tine 2.0 through the eyes of a “normal user”.
We want you – for Tine 2.0:
If you are interested to support Tine 2.0 development, then join our mailing list for voluntary usability-testers. Your help is very much appreciated and taking part in these tests only takes a little time and is fun! Take a look at our Icon Test demo to get a feeling what these usability-tests could look like.