Three Little Things Your IT Department Can Do For Better End-User Ease of Use

Ease of UseThere’s been a war raging in the business world for several years now, one between security and convenience. Unfortunately, security has lost. Thanks to mobility and cloud computing, end users are more empowered than ever. What that means from an IT perspective is that if they don’t want to use a solution, they won’t.

It also means that if you want to keep your business secure, you need to work with your users, rather than against them. You need to make the solutions your business mandates easy for them to use. Because if you don’t, then it doesn’t matter how secure your systems are.

Here are a few things you can do to start:

Understand What “User-Friendly” Means

Too often, I hear horror stories about this enterprise app or that business tool. It hardly works. The process for learning it is so obtuse, you might as well be a rocket scientist. You have to jump through multiple hoops just to authenticate and start it up.

Such apps are a relic. The apps you use in your business today must be …

  • Simple to install, easy to update.
  • Intuitive and efficient
  • Equipped with a pleasant, satisfying GUI
  • Simple to troubleshoot
  • Reliable

Set Up A “Self-Help” Desk

Truth is, the majority of the problems your users run into are things they can solve on their own if only they’ve the tools. But most businesses fail to consider that – their IT department, already overwhelmed with work, is backed up with busywork and help desk requests. Tempers flare, and frustration kills productivity.

Instead of going down such a path, why not set up a helpdesk that your employees can use to carry out their own technical support? You might be surprised what doing so does for your IT department.

Just Talk To Them

Last but certainly not least … why not just sit down and have a talk with your users? Ask them what they want to see in their business tools, and look at the apps and systems they use in their day-to-day. The better your understanding of employee workflows, the better-equipped you’ll be to give them what they really need in the workplace.

Closing Thoughts

For too long, there’s been an antagonistic relationship between IT and the end user. It doesn’t need to be that way. By working with your fellow employees and using applications and platforms people actually enjoy working with, you can ensure that, when given the choice between security and convenience, you don’t have to choose at all.

Matthew Davis is a technical writer and Linux geek for Future Hosting.

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