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A user interface is the space where interaction between machine and human occurs. It is everything designed into an information device with which a human being may interact such as display screen, keyboard, mouse, the appearance of a desktop, help messages, light pen, Illuminated characters, and how an application program or a website interaction and responds to it.
In order for me to decide what interface I will design for the sales clerks I will analyze the different user interfaces. The various interfaces include natural-language interfaces, question-and-answer interfaces, menus, form-fill interfaces, command languages; graphical user interfaces (GUIs) and web-based form-fill documents.
Natural -Language Interfaces - are possibly the best and ideal for inexperience users because they permit them to interact with the computer in their everyday or natural language. Natural -Language interfaces (LUI) are a type of computer human interface in which linguistic phenomena for instance like phrases, verbs and clauses act as user interface controls for selecting, creating and modifying data in software applications.
and-Answers Interface- the computer displays a question to the user on the display. How it works is that the user enters answers using either a keyboard or mouse click and the computer then acts on that input information in a preprogrammed manner which would normally just advance to the next question.
Menus- are an interface that provides the user with an onscreen list of available options and selections. Menus are limited to the options displayed and are not hardware dependent. With menus the user need not know the system but however does need to know what task should be accomplished. An example is the word processing menus that the user can copy, print and edit options. The user must know what each task does in order to accomplish the desired task.
Form-Fill Interfaces (Input/output Forms) - consist web-based or onscreen forms displaying fields containing data items or parameters that need to be communicated to the user. This interface typically is a form that facsimile of a paper form already familiar to the user. This interface is also known as input/out forms and form-based methods.
Command-language Interface- is an interface which allows the user to control the application with multiple touches of key strokes, commands, phrases, or some sequence of these three methods.
Graphical User Interfaces - Graphical User Interfaces (GUI) is a type of user interface that allows users to interact with electronic devices with images instead of txt commands. GUI can be used in computers or hand-held devices such as MP3 players and gaming devices.
Web-based user interfaces- Web -based user interface (WUI ) are a subclass of Graphical User Interfaces that accept input and provide output by generating webpage's which are transmitted via internet and viewed by the user using a web browser program.
Other User interfaces- aren't as popular but are strongly growing in this day and age. These interfaces are touch-sensitive, screens, stylus and speech recognition and synthesis.
After reviewing the different types of interfaces I believe that the form-fill Interface is most appropriate based on what I know about Bright's salesclerks and the current system. The main reason I selected this interface because M.T Sockette is very important to Bright's Electric for she is the longest working salesclerk. Her issue was that the check our process would become difficult because as she stated "We know the parts, we know our customers." And then she moves on to say "the guys they've brought in here to get in going, thoughâ€¦ I mean, they say things like, 'You can step right up and type one 60-watt General Electric CFL light bulb into the computer.' "To us, that's not a light bulb, it's a GE60WCFL. All of us know the part numbers here. We pride ourselves on it. Typing in all that junk will take all day." What I took from this is that M.T and the others really wants something they are familiar with and like I reassured them the part numbers will be as such they are familiar with and will save time. Because the system used now is a paper system that they are very familiar with; the form-fill interface is a form that is a duplicate of a paper form already familiar to the user.
Below is an example of a form-fill interface
As you can see from the example there is a section for the part number which each item can be given a part number which is familiar to all employees and then would come the description which would describe what the item is. Here is an example of our system to be implemented.
What you can see from this is
Because everyone is familiar with the customers their info can be on fill to ensure accuracy
If the order needs to be shipped it leaves that option available
The stock number is what the employees are familiar with as their part numbers
The description is a new way of searching for the item and to verify by checking the Stock #
To test the usability with the sales clerk I will first put M.T Sockette to the test because of being the most experienced and longest working salesclerk. First we will go with the typing of the stock # to insure that the right item is displayed when entered which should be familiar simple being as though everyone knows the stock number already. Then for those who don't know the stock number will try the method of typing in the description to see if the right stock # is displayed which can be verified by an experience sales clerk. Another thing to check is if the right price is displayed with the description which can be verified by the price sticker on the item or the customer. And lastly customer survey asking questions such as how fast was the checkout process, how accurate was the bill of sale and was everything displayed normally and easy to understand.
In this situation I would implement a database system that operates and a supply chain management system. Supply Change Management is defined as "a cross-functional interenterprise system that uses information technology to help support and mange the links between some of a company's key business processes and those of its supplier, customers, and business partners."(O'Brien, 2009) The reason I plan to mock a system as such because for the commercial bakery the system needs to be able to track orders, vendors, customers and supplies and a good Supply Chain Management (SCM) system can do such. The necessary keys in order to implement this system are to make sure that the bakery:
Have good supply chain partners. This is very important because without good chain partners the work will never get implement correctly.
Constant Follow up- Follow up to ensure the quantity and location of inventory are being made.
Do not rationalize the business from an internal point of view
Make sure that the business is covering all the strategic ,tactical and operational aspects of SCM
The system will be able to track inventory and information as it processes through the business. This will reduce time to fulfill orders as well using a SCM system. The system will notify the personnel from the different vendors on what supplies are needed. While different ingredient are being shipped in, orders are being shipped out to the either the schools or restaurants. The specialist can also insert that the goods have been over seen and is ready to be shipped out. This system is also an example of an electronic data interchange because all the data can be seen over the internet or other networks between each supply chain management. Whenever an order is ready to be shipped out, ingredients have arrived or orders have be completed they system will update and all information will be displayed. A model of the system is below of how the computer will track all progress among suppliers which are in blue the business which is in red and destinations which are in green.
O'Brien, J. & Marakas, G. (2009). Enterprise business systems. In B. Gordon (Ed.). Management information systems (9th ed., p.319). New York, NY:McGraw-Hill Irwin.
3. Getting user input is critical to system quality. It's important that all systems involve getting feedback so that you are able to observe and modify behavior. User input is can be referred to as user feedback or their Soliciting input (as in their opinions) about the system. The feedback usually compare current behavior with predetermined objectives and provides information describing the between actual and intended performance. User input is critical because it helps to meet psychological and cognitive processing needs and to help human confidence. The user input is useful because the users can provide feedback on how the system work and their progression of their work. Information for the user concerning their input can provided from spot surveys, phone follow-up, focus groups or general surveys. Taking the information provided can improve on user satisfaction and to help improve the system. The idea is to have the system function for all users including experts and users because everyone has to use it. What may be easy for the experts to interpret maybe be very difficult for others. With the help of the user input can assist in reforming the system so that is friendly for everyone.
A. The systems analyst plans was to train user of its newly installed computer system. Because they gave the option saying "Only people who feel as if they require training need to make reservations for offsite training; all others should learn to use the system as they work with it on the job" really got off the track in their own approach. When ensuring that users get training everyone should have the proper training who will have primary or secondary use of the system. It was a good idea that Cramtrack set up training for heads of the four departments that include both primary and secondary users but giving the option to who wants or who think they need the training was the immediate turn to going off track on the plan. When planning training strategies Kendall and Kendall says "The analysts will want to ensure that anyone whose work is affected by the new information system is properly trained by the appropriate trainer."(Kendall & Kendall 2011) And leaving the option to the user doesn't do such. Anyone can be over confident and think they can handle the tasks of the new system and really require training.
Kendall, K. E., & Kendall, J. E. (2011). Systems Analysis and Design (8th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education Inc./Prentice Hall.
B. When it comes to the training there is one main thing to be known when ensuring the right people get trained and that is that any and everyone who is and will be a primary and secondary user of the system must be trained. When setting up the training there is four major guidelines the analyst need to consider which is establishing measurable objectives, using appropriate training methods, selecting training sites and employing under stable training methods. Different users and operators will need different training because different people learn different ways. Some learn better by hearing, seeing and still others by doing. Some also need combination of each that way each user get the training that fits them best to benefit and interpret. Since this job is implementing a new computer system it's a good idea to provide hands on training which can be found as very essential. So once the analyst has all the users trained under those guidelines they should go over it with a trial and error process to ensure everyone has complete understanding of the new system being implemented.
c. The web can be used to assist in training for Cramtrack for numerous reasons. One being that you can accesses the web from any computer that has web capabilities. "Users of larger systems will sometimes be able to train on elaborate Web-based simulations or software that is identical to what Is being writing pr purchased"( Kendall & Kendall 2011) as training manuals , training cases or prototypes and mock-up of outputs. The web can provide training pages that can provide downloadable and printable material as well as a FAQ selection to provide all types of help. At any time if any of the material becomes outdated the vendor's site would also make changes to provide for the users.