The theme of this week’s links is redesign projects.
Redesigns are painful. Users find it unsettling when a familiar website radically changes its design, even if the new design is a great improvement. But organisations insist on periodical redesigns. A website is launched to much fanfare, but often the organisation then loses interest, leaving the website to crumble. Technologies and design trends change, and soon enough the website needs to be redesigned again.
Most web designers advocate an iterative approach, where the design is slowly tweaked over time, rather than undertaking wholesale redesigns every few years.
Here, Paul Boag argues that it’s time encourage organisations to move away from the project approach.
One of the reasons organisational websites fester and decay is because companies are good at projects and poor at iteration… There is no excuse for only periodically redesigning your site. Why limit your website’s optimal performance to immediately after a periodic redesign, when it could be running at peak performance the entire time?
Another interesting article about the issues surrounding designing for an organisation.
Politics and egos are the main reasons that great design goes awry – either it is never presented (because presenting it is a risk to those egos and would be not wise politically), or it is presented and dismissed, or it is presented and then changed such that egos are not wounded and the politics are in tact, the design integrity is hardly a passing consideration.
Moving on all fronts at the same time can overwhelm finite resources, giving rise to a project that’s a mile wide and an inch deep. Unable to get the full attention they deserve, equally worthwhile objectives end up competing for priority. Inevitably, someone loses. Avoid the ‘big bang’ effect.