Very few German small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that develop software employ usability experts. Outside these companies, too, hardly any usability services are used in connection with operational software. The practical experience for the evaluation of the usability of application software usually lies directly with the user. Today's users have an increasing background of experience with IT systems in their private environment. As a result, their demands with regard to the usability of operational software have increased considerably. However, a direct exchange of developers with the growing requirements of users does not usually take place.
The aim of the project was to support medium-sized companies in the development of usable and competitive software. In addition to the IAD and the Institute for Software and Multimedia Technology (MMT) of the TU Dresden, ma ma Interactive System Design GbR, CAS Software AG and Steinbeis Innovation gGmbH, six other associated partners were involved in this project.
The IAD acted as project leader in the PUMa programme. Consequently, the focus of its activities was on project coordination and networking with partner projects and medium-sized companies. Furthermore, a comprehensive usability method compendium was developed in cooperation with partner projects on the basis of a broad literature and method research. In the course of a usability test(-dinner?), user-centred evaluations were carried out on the PUMa demonstrator.
Together with Usability in Germany (UIG) and uCare, two further projects from the Usability funding initiative, the IAD promoted the use of synergy effects between the individual projects. Under the coordination of the IAD, a method plug-in was developed with which the individual funding projects can access a standardised method database and compile their individual method portfolio.
The project PUMa was funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy from 2014 to 2016 as part of the funding initiative “Einfach intuitiv – Usabiliy für den Mittelstand” under the funding code 01MU13001A.
Walter, J., & König, C. (2017). PUMa: Entwicklung einer Online-Plattform zur Förderung des Einsatzes von nutzerzentrierter Produktentwicklung in deutschen KMU. In: 63. GfA-Frühjahrskongress, 15.-17. Februar 2017, Brugg, Schweiz.
Terentieva, T., & Kauer, M. (2015). Analyse des aktuellen Stands der Berücksichtigung von Usability bei der Softwareentwicklung in deutschen kleinen und mittleren Unternehmen. Erschienen in: H. Fischer, A. Endmann & M. Krökel (Hrsg.): Mensch und Computer 2015 – Usability Professionals. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2015, S. 316- 320.