BEP 321 – Project Management 6: Launching User Testing

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BEP 321 Lesson Module – English for Project Management 6: User Testing

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on English for project management and launching user testing for a software project.

At the heart of every software project is the user. If the user finds the software confusing, or if it doesn’t do what the user needs it to do, what’s the point? For this reason, user testing is an essential part of the development process.

User testing can involve a range of activities. You might watch how users interact with the software. You might track or monitor how they use it. And you might ask them for their opinions. In this way, you collect information and feedback that helps you create the best user experience possible. And just as the software itself needs to be user friendly, so does user testing. If people don’t have a clear idea of what they’re supposed to do during testing, you’ll be wasting an opportunity.

So when you launch testing, it’s important to outline what you’re going to be doing, and what kind of feedback you’re interested in. Because the software is new to the test users, you’ll need to give them clear instructions on how to use it and give them an overview of the main features. You might also find yourself emphasizing key points along the way. After all, it’s much easier to make sure everyone understands upfront than to deal with confused users during testing.

In today’s dialog, we’ll hear Jill, a developer with a software company called OptiTech. They’ve been developing software for a logistics company, and now they are ready to launch the first round of user testing. We’ll also hear Liam, the IT manager for the client, and Carla, one of the test users.

Listening Questions

1. What does Jill say will be the final step in this test?
2. What three aspects of the software does this test focus on?
3. What does Jill emphasize is absolutely necessary for the drivers to do?

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