Three clicks instead of ten. Two steps instead of five. White space. Intuitive icons. Drag and drop. As consumer UX underwent a renaissance over the last decade, enterprise software stagnated with a design sensibility from the dial-up era.
Usability—much less beauty—was never a priority for business software. All that mattered was that large and complex applications worked. What’s the point of tweaking and beautifying when basic functionality is challenging enough and all of your competitors are equally sub par?
The point is users. Not yesterday’s users who eventually adapted to whatever complex software product you put in front of them. Those users are retiring. I’m talking about millennial workers who know better than to settle for unwieldy, confusing applications that only make their jobs harder.
By Marc Scibelli