Posted by: bluesyemre | August 11, 2015

The Wired Library – The User Experience by Kathleen Hughes


When we say “user experience” we are talking about something that can be measured. While user experience designers are motivated to make awesome things and decrease worldsuck, library stakeholders may not always understand the motivation behind user-driven decisions. For all they see, these changes may simply be about the visual look and feel of a website. The thing to stress is that user experience is plottable and predictable. User experience affects the library’s bottom line. If we were to write up a no-frills definition, we might go with: The user experience is the measure of your end-user’s interaction with your library: its brand, its product, and its services.

Such user experience is holistic, negatively or positively impacted at every interaction point your patron has with your library. The brand spanking new building loses its glamour when the bathrooms are filthy; the breadth of the collection loses its meaning when the item you drove to the library for isn’t on the shelf; an awesome digital collection just doesn’t matter if it’s hard to access; the library that literally pumps joy through its vents nets a negative user experience when the hump of the doorframe makes it hard to enter with a wheelchair.

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