The Humane Touch: Bad Design Can Be Costly

[from WebWord] Forbes has a short article on how usability is hurt by keeping status quo. Don't miss the great email annecdote at the "end" :) of the article. Not to mention inefficient, demoralizing, and embarrassing Bad user interfaces may be more expensive than you think, including software your company buys as well as software your company writes. For example, everybody knows that Microsoft Word, Excel, and other popular programs can be maddeningly frustrating, but few take the time to figure out what their shortcomings mean in terms of lost work, lower worker morale, and wasted dollars. Microsoft Word requires at least 30% more keystrokes and 100% more mouse moves to accomplish certain editing tasks than would an optimal word processor. Decreasing physical work not only saves time but also decreases incidents of repetitive stress injury. Good design can eliminate many of the steps that are most damaging to nerves and tendons. ... The saying among IT professionals used to be, "Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM." Now it's, "Nobody ever got fired for buying Microsoft."