A project can only be successful when the experts are objective…

If complementarity is key in the success of a project, it is equally important that everyone avoids subjectivity.

Imagine a project involving a behavioural expert and a designer, whose skills are complementary. Of course, both experts will work on the very same interface and in some cases that can be a risk.

Each expert will analyze the same material through a different filter depending on his or her own knowledge and expertise.

That’s why they need to define objective evaluation criteria in order to work effectively and efficiently.

Let’s take an example: a behavioural expert needs to give his recommendations to the agency that is developing the site of SFR.

SFR website analysis without objectivity

This remark makes sense but why would a behavioural expert be entitled to give a subjective opinion to a designer working on the interface? And why would the designer know best what the outline should look like? A never-ending discussion.

Let’s see now what happens when we add some objectivity to this dialogue, using tools that predict human behaviour.

Yes, they do exist! Our R&D department has been developing similar tools for years and our experts use them in order to shortcut subjective discussions and find the best solution.

SFR website analysis with objectivity

When we return to our example, we see what type of information the occipital lobe (the vision centre) of users will receive when they look at the advertising banner.

This tool is based on scientific work taking into account the binocular vision field, the distribution of the cones and sticks on the retina, and the distribution of the colour sensors.
It now becomes clear that there is a problem with the design and that the behavioural expert, who has used state-of-the-art tools, did indeed make a valid point…
Today, our experts use a set of software programmes that allow them to predict the easiness to click, the difficulty of a text, … I will get back to other examples in the future.

The main problem I encounter is the fact people think they have the same knowhow as behavioural experts and that they are not afraid to promote a common sense approach, simply because they lack the necessary knowledge. Some of them even proclaim themselves to be Ergonomic Experts. In that case, I prefer not to participate in the project.

It has already happened to us: we have stopped working for one of our largest accounts because one of the new employees of the company had the above-mentioned attitude. It was not an easy decision but our expertise couldn’t provide added value to the client anymore…

Here’s the lesson we’ve learnt: today, next to the commercial criteria that come into play, we also evaluate the teams with which we will have to work. This technique enables us to assess the complementarity of expertise and the degree of maturity the team members will have.

The objective of this blog is promote the same professional approach: in the future, all interfaces that have the ambition of providing maximum – both from a client and an end user perspective – should be in the hands of experts, and not generalists.

We are creating a new kind of profession, new tools, new types of expertise,… I hope this will inspire you to work intelligently as well 😉

Have a nice week!