Arts and Humanities
Employee self-service portals can help eliminate wait times, educate employees, and reallocate valuable resources to better service company needs – but only if employees can effectively use the portals. The ITS Self-Service Portal at Olympus America Inc. (OAI) is a resource for technology-related problem‑solving. Employees can find work instructions, troubleshooting techniques, automated process requests, and other helpful information provided by the IT department. While the portal is useful, there are many aspects which if improved could greatly benefit OAI.
I evaluate the portal through a human-computer interaction (HCI) lens, highlighting the positive and negative aspects. Positives include reasons why employees are likely to start using a self-service portal and reasons why they would likely continue using this specific OAI portal. Negatives include reasons why employees may have difficulty finding information, and why employees may be more likely to contact the IT department than to use the portal. HCI is at the forefront of this evaluation: self-service help compared to live help; difficulty with search terms; and being able to save instructions for future use, to name a few examples.
Based on the evaluation, I give recommendations for improving the portal. The recommendations are directed at the OAI key corporate personnel and the IT department. With emphasis on employee needs, the recommendations are meant to help create a more welcoming, easy-to-use portal, reflective of the key concepts of usability and HCI. I also explain that while the portal can be improved, nothing will replace the need for direct help from fellow employees.
Master of Arts in English, Technical Communication Option
Foley, Jerrod, "Best Practices for Self-Service: Taking Account of User Input on Self-Service Technology" (2017). Technical Communication Capstone Course. 18.
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