Skip to Main Content
The success of a product or service depends on how well it is received by its intended audience. Usually success results from a systematic design process that involves the intended users. The user experience consists of how a product or service is perceived by users, and the goal is to make the experience consistent and supportive. User Engineering (UE) is an evolving discipline that focuses on designing the total user experience, from initial awareness and acquisition of a product or service—the “offering”—to first use, then day-to-day use, onward through the life cycle of the offering. UE goes well beyond User-Centered Design by adopting software engineering approaches and tools. It applies these approaches and tools rigorously through all phases of a project from its initiation through its design, development, deployment, and life cycle. Rigor is introduced through detailed definitions of roles, activities, work products, methods, and measures, with a specific focus on assessing business-oriented measures against established targets throughout the entire process. A multidisciplinary design team is necessary for UE to create the user experience in partnership with its intended users. This paper presents an overview of the fundamental concepts of the UE process, including an appreciation of the engineering-inspired rigor.
Note: The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Incorporated is distributing this Article with permission of the International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) who is the exclusive owner. The recipient of this Article may not assign, sublicense, lease, rent or otherwise transfer, reproduce, prepare derivative works, publicly display or perform, or distribute the Article.