The User Interface

  • Arthur M. Langer


The success factors in analysis start with the established interfaces from day one. What does this mean? You must start the process by meeting with the right people in the organization. In the best projects, the process is as follows:
  1. 1.

    Executive interface: There needs to be an executive-level supporter of the project. Without such a supporter, you risk not being able to keep the project on schedule. Most important, you need a supporter for the political issues that you may need to handle during the project (discussed in detail later). The executive supporter, sometimes known as a sponsor (JAD reference), should provide a preliminary schedule advising the organization of what is expected and the objectives of the project. The executive supporter should attach a letter to the preliminary schedule and send it to the project team members. The letter must put the importance of the project into perspective. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you draft this letter yourself or at least have influence over its content, since doing so can ensure that the message is delivered appropriately. The executive supporter should also establish regular reviews with the analyst and the user community to ensure that objectives are being met.

  2. 2.

    Department head or line manager interface: If appropriate, the department head should provide guidance about which individuals should represent the department needs. If several people are involved, the analyst should consider a JAD-like approach. Depending on the size of the organization, the department head might also establish review sessions to ensure compliance.

  3. 3.

    Functional user interface: Perhaps the most important people are the ones who can provide the step-by-step needs of the system. Figure 2.1 shows a typical organization interface structure.



Business Process Department Head Business Area Novice User Organization Chart 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arthur M. Langer
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Continuing Education and Special ProgramsNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Columbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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