Controlled experimentation to improve the usability of business management systems: UDA-ERP case
Authors: Catalina Astudillo-Rodriguez, Juan Calle, Esteban Crespo-Martínez, Gabriela Chica-Contreras, Julio Mosquera
Abstract: An ERP enterprise resource planning system is software that allows managing the tasks involving an organisation’s processes. Usability within this system plays a vital role in users’ performance, facilitating interaction in an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system and boosting performance in terms of efficiency and effectiveness, which is why it is essential to perform usability tests. The UDA-ERP software developed by the Universidad del Azuay is a business management system whose objective is to improve the production processes of manufacturing companies in the MIPYME sector in Cuenca, Ecuador. This motivated us to evaluate the degree of user perception of the system’s usability. The present work evaluates the usability of the UDA-ERP software by applying a controlled experiment based on the Wholin methodology. This experiment was used for five experimental groups, including experienced users and users without experience in these systems. Controlled experimentation evaluated the performance of the selected study subjects regarding task completion time and completed tasks. This way, a comparison of the results was obtained, contrasting the results between the different experimental groups. The results show that each group completes the tasks with short time differences; In terms of usability, the UDA-ERP software is correct and does not require modification. In conclusion, usability is a relevant feature to consider in an enterprise resource planning system; hence, it is recommended to apply usability evaluations with some frequency.
Keywords: Business software, ERP, Experimentation, Usability testing
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