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Towards one box for searching

Written by Edgar Wieringa on . Posted in Exact Synergy

In an earlier post I already touched indirectly on one of the projects we are doing; it is what I tend to call ‘Simply Synergy’. We aim to make parts of Synergy more goal-oriented, more modern and more recognizable within your business process. What you can think of – as just one example – is to request for a day off via a simple page which also instantly shows you your remaining number of days. So the possibility to request time off and instantly seeing your balance; we are convinced that is what would help you in the process of asking time off.

One of the parts of this research project is to move from individual boxes for searching documents, accounts items etcetera; towards one place where all the searches can be reached. Hold your horses however. Not one search across all entities (yet), but a simpler way to find what you need. One of the things I am personally enthusiastic about is that it will not only offer you suggestions based on what you typed but it will also open up your history of recently used data. Since a pictures says more than a thousand words, just take a look on some screenshots.

For those of you who have read between the lines, this is not yet a final deliverable nor is it planned for a certain date. Our intentions are however clear; to make Exact Synergy simpler to use and better connected to business processes. So enjoy the sharing but do not yet see this as an end deliverable available in your environment end of this month :-). I also tried to keep this post simple, so it leaves lot’s of room for interpretation on what you will get. For instance think of a first deliverable where the focus can be on the employee self service functionality.

Image credit for the header image: Davydutchy (from Flickr).

Edgar Wieringa

I enjoy building software that supports your business' goals and people love to use. Hobbies: cooking, food, travelling, reading and running. Follow my work on http://twitter.com/edjewie

Comments (4)

  • Barry van der Meij

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    Hi Edgar,

    Great improvement but I am not yet sure whether or not the first step would help from a user perspective.

    Now the user must only key in the search term in the right search box and off he goes, with the proposed solution the user would first have to choose the right entity, then key in his search term, so it is (or can be) an extra mouseclick. Average users search through account, requests, people, and documents throughout the day.

    Next improvement would be (but that’s more about indexing) to be able to search on both words as well as parts of words. Now searching requests with synerg do not give a result with the word synergy in it, just because you forgot an y. and to also search based on more then only words, so a string of words, exclude results with word x etc.

    Keep up the good work and hurry up, you guys are getting behind very quickly because users don’t like the UX, Sexy, simple and easy is what they want, please do not wait too long!!

    Reply

  • Anthony

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    Edgar,
    the question that we sometimes get is:-

    Why do I have to seach for documents and requests seperately?

    With the move to putting attachments directly on Requests and tools like Interconnect (on Classic) that can create a request from an email having a single search box that can cover both Requests and Documents would lessen the difference in customers eyes.

    as Barry says – Customers want Simple and Easy.

    Reply

  • Edgar Wieringa

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    @Anthony,

    Your remark we have heard more often. And we seriously considered adding it. We parked it however for now, since to make it simple we feel we would need to overhaul the full set-up. While creating, one should then also not make a choice anymore between a document and a request. At least that is our view on making the product as a whole more simple. Easier to understand. The solutions should be consistent. So it is still on our radar but for now we parked it.

    Making things simpler envolves making lot’s of choice and this is one of them. Just like it is a choice to offer one box, which indeed makes Barry’s remark valid. You have to do one other action to search for a different entity. We however try to make this as easy as possible and by also disclosing the history we aim to limit the total clicks per user and just serve her better. It is like with the iPhone. It is a device simple to use. But to make a call you need to do some more clicks (no dialer or keys directly) than other more traditional phones, still the overall experience is great.

    Reply

  • Scott Leete

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    Always excited about new improvements. But perhaps a chance to suggest more. The Synergy Office Add-in requires that the user FIRST select the entity that they want to search on. Then type the entry and then hit enter. Sometimes enter is not required.

    How about allowing the user to type first, have the entity icon after the text box (never understood why it is in front, is this a European convention?). Hitting enter triggers the search or the selection of a new entity triggers the search.

    Reply

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