Business Analysts and Software Testers frequently fill many roles on a project. Because they generally develop a deep understanding of the applications they work with, they become valuable in other roles as well. One of those additional roles may be staying in touch with business partners and users after the application has been deployed.
If you are deploying an application that is new to the company and will be used company wide, you most likely will be releasing upgrades and fixes on a regular basis for a while to get the application where it should be regarding available functionality and application stability.
This phase is a great time to start what is known as an “End User Advisory Committee” (EUAC). This can be a committee of users of the application from different offices across the country or even internationally.
As you start looking at upgrades to make, involve the EUAC to help make decisions about where data should be displayed, what screens it should be on and other basic functionality questions that will come up.
Meet with the EUAC (usually done via conference call) on a regular schedule, such as every other Wednesday at 3:00p.m.
Go over fixes and enhancements the IT area wants to make to the application. Be sure to get their input on how those changes will fit in their business process, as well as suggestions they may have concerning the changes.
This helps to keep the users involved in the development of the application. In turn, they have a vested interest in making it as good as it can be and will want to continue using the application.
This also works great with a troubled application that users don’t like to use. If you are making changes to an application because it’s not very user-friendly or has a lot of defects, getting an EUAC together to help define the requirements for the changes will help get them back on board with using the application.
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