Key Stakeholders: End Users

31. January 2007 15:31 by jpena in General  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

End users are sometimes ignored when planning a migration project.  Traditional software development methodologies often lack an appropriate level of involvement from the end user, and this can limit end-user satisfaction with the final product.  Before you begin a migration, it is important that you understand the needs of the users of the original application: after all, they are the ones who will use the migrated application in their everyday activities.  Be sure to gather the following information on the perception that end users have on the original application:

  • Features that the users dislike: sometimes the users consider that certain features of the original application are not suited to their needs, or should be improved.  If this is the case, you will be migrating something that the users don’t like, so you can expect the same disapproval when you finish the migration.  Because of this, it’s a good idea to make the necessary improvements after you reach Functional Equivalence on the target platform.  On certain cases, rewriting those particular features or modules can be a good option too.
  • Features that the users depend on:  in several applications, you will find that there are features the users can’t live without, and even the slightest change of functionality could cause a problem.  For example, in a data-entry form that is designed for fast-typing users entering lots of information, something as simple as changing the TabOrder of the form controls could be disastrous.

Of course this list is not exhaustive, so be sure to involve the end users form the beginning of the project and gather enough information from them.  Whenever possible, make their needs part of the requirements for the migration or the post-migration phases.