This is why we created Action Desk – a highly configurable solution, built on the following principles:
“Design for now, let the user be in the moment.”
Don’t design a cockpit with dials and buttons for absolutely any and all scenarios, no matter how remote or irrelevant they may be. Instead, reduce complexity by presenting the user with only the necessary tools for the task at hand. In other words: design for now – let the user be in the moment.
Process First, Then Technology
Rather than having to change your business process to fit the technology, make sure your solution and user interface are adaptable and can be configured easily to fit your changing business needs.
There are some necessary complexities, in which case the best option is often to hide it. Too often, complex and infrequently used features take up more screen real estate than those which are used frequently and possess simpler features. This is wrong. A good user interface should make the most common tasks prominent and hide the rare tasks so they don’t get in the way. If this concept isn’t quite clicking, ask yourself why the electrical panel/fuse-box for your home isn’t mounted on your kitchen counter.
Minimize Visual Noise
The amount of visual noise on an interface has a huge impact on the perceived complexity of the interface. Keeping visual noise to a minimum will make an interface seem easier to use. The two primary tools for reducing visual noise are white space and contrast.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
As an application begins to take shape, problems often recur in various parts of the application. These recurring problems characteristically tend to have similar solutions. Therefore the best practice is to look for ways to reuse components of the interface. Reusing elements for different purposes has two advantages: less development time and a more consistent user experience. If a user learns to achieve one task, they can apply that same knowledge to accomplishing a second task as long as it is implemented consistently.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is often considered a tool for increasing self- service (which is great!), but AI is best used when in conjunction with a human. AI and conversational interfaces (bots) can be used to customize the experience for the agent. By putting a bot in the agent UI, these self- learning, smart, automated tools can offer suggestions to the agent and monitor things like dispositions, which ultimately help agents be more productive.
As jazz musician Charles Mingus said, “Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.”