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IMAT5209 Human Factors In System Design

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IMAT5209 Human Factors In System Design

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Course Code: IMAT5209
University: De Montfort University

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Country: United Kingdom


Your firm of interaction design consultants is trying to build up a portfolio of impressive work, to enable it to pitch for business convincingly in the future.
Your task is to produce a usability evaluation of an interactive system, plus a presentation of your results. You have a completely free choice of what interactive system you evaluate, except that it must not be one that you have evaluated for a previous assignment.
You may get people to help you with tasks that are easier or better done by more than one person, but you need to be very clear about what you did and what others did.
1.Identifying the use cases or aspects of the functioning of the system to be considered, and briefly describing them in your report. (These don’t need to be a complete set of use cases; for very complicated systems focusing on one part of what they do is just fine. However you should give a clear indication of what subset of the functionality of the system you are considering, and what you are not considering. If in doubt, cover less functionality in more detail.)
2.Choosing an evaluation methodology. You should apply a standard evaluation methodology such as user testing, cognitive walkthrough, or heuristic evaluation. (You need to show that you know what the evaluation methodology is; not knowing what evaluation methodology you have been asked to use or are using is a common cause of assignment failure. If you want to do something non-standard, ask advice from your tutor.)
3.Defining an evaluation procedure. This will include stating one or several user tasks to be tested or considered with exact descriptions of the scenario and the goal the user is trying to achieve, as well as what the evaluator will do to collect results and produce an evaluation. The evaluation procedure needs to be described in full, separately from the description of the results. For a user trial, this involves describing the exact wording of the instructions given to the subjects. For a heuristic evaluation this involves being clear about the heuristics being considered; using a set that is more detailed and concrete than Nielsen’s set of ten principles is a good idea.


Human factors in system design have been considered to cover the key concepts of the human factors and how they are applied in developing and designing the systems (jakob, 2015). System design have helped us to learnt about so many factors that are related to human when developing a systems such as the human cognitive, physical capabilities, designs in limitations when the system is performing, how safe, how reliable and the operations that need to be done (ADTSR, 2016). Human factors in the design of a system has been focusing on the major concepts that the design processes are underlying, the human factors and the behavioral theories of the design process (Tonex, 2017).
Human factors in the system designs are so critical when the desire to understand the website design come up (nilodaS, 2015). The main idea that gives the designers headache is first, understand the topic and then be able to convince others of the lessons learnt or experience gained from the study (US, 2018). For the better understanding of the designers of a given website we have to perform an investigation of the working of a given system i.e. website, so that after interaction we can recommend any necessary changes (point, 2018) to the designer and developers of such websites. In this report the basis will be on the design process (ExperienceUXzx, 2018).The efforts has been focused on depicting the human factors design as how they occur or appear in the system. (Nielsen, 1999)
EBay Website
In understanding what the term interactive system means then it will be good to look at the perspective of the different authors and how they see and view it. Interactive system is an application or system that will allow users who are different locations and sites to perform various using various varieties (safleh, 2017). EBay is an online interactive website that sells good and services online such as the fashions, electronics, collectibles and Art, Home and Garden, sporting goods, motor deals among many more (Ebay, 2017). The way the individuals interacts with the system is determined by the features of the usability capabilities. Some of the factors that will need to be considered when evaluating the system will be the use of how visible the system is, the clarity of the entire system, the look and feel of the icons and links, and the weight of the content with reference to their specifics and how easy the content has been aligned and well it is when navigating across different pages in the EBay website.
The main focus in the research is the usabilities of human interactions test that needs to be performed on the website of EBay (Ebay, 2017). EBay is a globe online company that allows their clients or customers to view the products, select if need be and if that what suits them, then they can go ahead and place an order by adding the selected items on the shopping cart and making the order which will be followed by the payment. The main aim of the report being to analyze on EBay Website by doing an observation whereby we will have some randomly selected participants who will interact with the website in a structured and systematic way, and afterwards filling a questionnaire that will help to capture the results for the evaluation (Chris, 2018). Lastly is that there will be specific where the findings will be used in giving the recommendations which will be in reference to the information captured from the observations from the participants (Garyper, 2018). This will be on the basis of the results from interacting and those of the questionnaire.
EBay Use Case 
EBay is one of the biggest wholesaler and retailer that supplies and distributes products and services international. EBay has been distributing services and products to over 2 million people globally daily and over 20 million products distributed daily. As a biggest wholesaler and retailer at the same time it has many branches in different locations in all the six continents and which works as directed from the headquarters. EBay has been facing competitions from other online companies such as Amazon, and as they entirely depend on online marketing and advertising then for EBay to increase its sales than they will have to foster their products all over the world by improving their audience so that they can reach the targeted audience (Luchart, 2016).
The products are classified in to specific and unique categories making them easy when looking for a tag of a given product or service that is offered by EBay on their website. Customers and clients who want view products and services at EBay can do that even before they register or login on to the system and this has made it to be friendly to the customers and clients as they will only login if they make a decision and that is that of purchasing product (Koray, 2014).. The figure below shows the use case for how the user or the selected participants will interact with the EBay website.

Figure 1the use case of EBay Website when interacting
From the observation on the EBay Use case, the participants selected will have to interact with the website in so many ways even before they reach the process of purchasing. The main reason for this study in the report is to do an evaluation by testing all the usability features and that is terms of the functionalities and navigations through different webpages across the EBay website. All the Participant must understand how the system perform and this will be by indicating how the easy it is to interact with the website, the other one will be the consistency and the visibility of the graphical User Interface and lastly is how clear the content of the website has been aligned and it they corresponds to the real world in terms of the prices and the way the products have been described.
Evaluation Methodology 
The evaluation test of the usability will have to follow some procedures creating four steps. The steps will be followed by the participants helping them in doing an analysis of the functionalities and the features of the usability of EBay website. There were 10 users selected to perform the test and this was to be a one on one interaction by dealing with the four steps where each and every step was allowed 5 minutes amounting to a total of 20 minutes to perform all the four tasks allocated. All the functionality features in all the tasks were to be observed by the researcher when the users were interacting with the system
The four Steps were as follows

The first one is to interact with the EBay website indicating what one understands from the interaction.
To view all the major categories and all the products they sell.
Selecting the desired products and adding them to the shopping Cart.
Placing an order and after doing a corresponding match of the selected products to the real world economy and markets.

NB: it was clear that each and every participant should perform one step at a time and will only go to the next step only if they had finished on the preceding one and if they need help they should consult the instructor (urfl, 2018).
Case 1
In the first step participants were supposed to do a comprehensive and descriptive visit to the EBay homepage. The main idea for such a visit with intense aims is seeing and viewing the structure of EBay Website. Another idea that arose is knowing of what EBay is dealing with and how the products are categorized in terms of what they are offering and the way the linked page navigates across the entire website.  We were also seeking the ways to communicate the Support of EBay that is through live chats or any other way to contact them.
Case 2
In the second step the aim is viewing the products in all the categories. After the viewing of different products it will be easy to understand specific products from the categories are indicated such as the TVs, Mats, and Appliances etc.  The main idea brought about by this step is testing the way the participants are interacting with the EBay website and much more navigations across different webpages with products in various webpages.   
Case 3
In step three the idea is selecting three to five items and adding them to the shopping cart. To add the selected products on the shopping cart of EBay, then we can be able to do a summation of the prices of the selected products and comparing them with the real prices in the world from other competitive companies.
Case 4
This is the fourth step that aims at lapping up the system performance where the main idea is checking the response rate from the live chat and the way they handle their customers.
The evaluation methodology above which is composed of four steps indicated from case one to case 4. If the four steps are successfully achieved then the participants will have to fill a questionnaire with questions related to the already performed four steps. The questionnaire is aimed at helping the users to view the general applications of the website of EBay. The selected participant were requested to rate the system interaction where they were supposed to rate for a range of about five points and that is from Strongly agree that they are satisfying to strongly Disagree that they are satisfying (nngroup, 2015). The report preferred the evaluation method by providing a direct interaction where all the users felt the interaction method and how genuine the look and feel was after interaction.
Evaluation Results.
In the case study there some key issues that emerged on the four steps and from what was recorded in the questionnaire. In this case all the participants started the four steps the same time where each had his or her machine with internet connections. In case one and two the main aim was navigating across the websites of easy and checking how easy they understand the website and navigating across the webpages in an easy way with not having to help (SharePoint, 2011). In performing such activities it is true to report that many of the members who participated we able to interact without major difficulties to be reported and hence navigating from one webpage to the other was not a problem. The figures below shows the processes from step 1 to step 4.
Figure 2 the homepage of EBay website

Table 1 Evaluations result table
The results in the table clearly shows that it will be right to conclude that of all the selected participants who participated in the process that of the 10 four of them were not contented with the design of the homepage of EBay and that the details in the page were not convincing and appealing at all. Not all of them agreed to give a rating of all 5 points in all the process necessities. In navigation section it will right to conclude most of them we able to interact and navigate across different links and pages.

Figure 3 Viewing the products and knowing what to select
The step of how to view and select seemed so easy and that many were able to navigate from one page to the other viewing and selecting the products of their choice. The main aim for the step of viewing is testing how easy it will be to the participants when navigating across different products webpages in different and specific categories. This was clearly observed when using the menu bar on the left dashboard as shown above on the figure, and also to find out if the content giving a description of the product is relevant to the described product. Also in this step one is able to check and know the consistency of the design depending on how the user visited the webpage viewing a given product. Many users complemented that the task was well structured and arranged and the rating in terms of satisfaction was given five points out of five.
The aim of performing the case three was testing if the users were able to view and the select the products in their desired category within the EBay website. In this step one can be able to view all the desired products in the selected category and then select the desired product by adding them to the shopping cart where one will have said to be almost completing making an order. In step three it will be evident to say that out of the of the ten participants eight of them made it possible to adding at least three items to the cart meanwhile two of them needed some admin help. Even though there were some challenges encountered during adding to the shopping cart due to sizes and shapes in some other products almost all the participants acknowledges such and corrected the errors and did as instructed by the instructor. The figure below clearly shows how the users added the selected products to the shopping cart of EBay.

Figure 4 the selected Products that are added to the shopping cart
As seen from above figure it is right to deduct that EBay online website is very interactive and that it offers services closer to the customers.
Last step main idea was to test the response rate in the EBay website and how effective the live chat way of communicating to EBay interface was.  When checking on this most of the participants were not able to connect with customer service support. The figure below shows the chat window.

Figure 5 Chat or help window for EBay
In this context it will be hard for a first user to initialize a chat as there is no live chat. One may have to wait for about 24 hours to wait for a response. The participants agreed that the due to the system being slow when responding to the questions that the service support is very poor. In overall the points of the effectiveness of the system was three out of five and two out of the five points when interacting on the chat window
Overall results.
As seen from all the results above it is evident to say that all the selected participants who interacted with the system were composed and that they were able to perform all the stated tasks. The observation from the results states that of the 10 participants 70 percentage were satisfied fully while 30 percentage were not.  The overall usability of the above results can be clearly expressed as shown in the graph below.

Figure 6 Overall Results of EBay Website in form of a graph
From the results on the overall results of EBay Website in the graph above it will be right to say that EBay website has a rating that is average on the features of the usability. This concept above will be explained in a detailed manner.
Checking on the consistency of the overall design and the alignment of the website components many participants were not fully satisfied and the rating for the interaction was about three out of the five points. The lack of the two points lacked because there was low response caused by the unavailable customer service (Dupree, 2014).
Visibility and Clarity of Information
Content about the products in all the webpages was noted to have relevant and a good understanding (Explorables, 2017). There is a good match of color and fonts making the visibility very clear and matching the expectations of the participants viewing the website.
Ease of use and functionalities
The case tested on how easy it is when navigating across different pages in EBay website. It will be clear to confirm and say that it is very much possible when analyzing and making a conclusion that the computer novices can navigate easily (mesaq, 2013).
There is need to improve the contact window by developing a window live chat that will make it fast in responding and thus becoming very effective at all times everywhere (Guideliner, 2011). There is need for adding the content in the description of a product. The content of the webpage should be aligned and use the use of slide sorters.
In conclusion it will be wise to know that for any system to be interactive in all good ways then it will be easy to use the functions that will help in navigating across the website. The content of the website should be appealing to the viewers. From the analysis seen from the overall results it is  evident to say that there is ease of navigation, clarity and how visible the content is, interaction of the functionalities of the website have an average rating with respect to information used and gathered from the interaction and the questionnaire.  In conclusion for one to make a good and a quality website EBay will be required to apply all the above stated recommendations. 
ADTSR, 2016. community Engagement principles , 4(1), pp. 11-16.
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