Bad UX example of the day

By | February 13, 2012

My employer uses Oracle Financials to manage its books.

The user experience of Oracle Financials is truly awful. We’re in the process of upgrading to a new version of the application, after using the old version for several years. One would think in the interim Oracle would have hired a decent UX designer and some UX developers, but I’m afraid not. Although a few things are slightly improved in the new version, other things are worse, and there has clearly been no overarching effort to overhaul the UX, which absolutely, positively, needs to be thrown away and redesigned from scratch.

Today’s example of bad UX, taken from the new version of Oracle Financials to which we’re in the process of upgrading, comes from the very first screen you encounter, i.e., the login screen:

How is this bad UX? Let me count the ways:

  1. Do you really need to use asterisks to show that the “User Name” and “Password” fields on a login form are required? Of course not. It’s patently obvious that they’re required. Anyone who doesn’t understand that the username and password on a web application login screen are required fields is a neanderthal who shouldn’t allowed anywhere near the application. Marking them required is entirely unnecessary UX clutter.
  2. It is almost as useless to provide an “example” value for the User Name field, especially when the example given might look nothing like actual usernames. In our installation, for example, we use first initial plus last name as usernames, e.g., “jkamens”, so the example given is not only useless, it’s actively misleading.
  3. But the pièce de résistance is truly the “example” value for the Password field. An example for a password? Really? It’s almost surreal.


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