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What We Do:

Usage*-Centered Solution Architecture and Engineering

APConnsulting, LLC introduces a new approach to traditional systems and solution architecture. Rather than simply matching technology to business models, we also focus on the intended usage or "fitness" of the technology to determine its benefits in terms of enhancing users’ roles and facilitating their workflows. We thus expand the analysis from functions and features to include a focus on the critical usage scenarios, in terms of both human factors and business results.

We start by capturing usage requirements from stakeholders while analyzing systems and technology needs. We then create solutions that fit the workflow and task needs of key users in critical roles. We employ the solution architecture framework to select the information, operation, and navigation contexts needed to support each usage scenario.

The focus on usage also drives the engineering tradeoff process for balancing system quality attributes against business concerns such as return on investment, increased market appeal, and enhanced customer satisfaction and support.

For example, at InfoClarus, Inc:

  • We redesigned a BlackBerry legal application to reduce data entry time from 1-2 minutes to 10-15 seconds. By focusing on this critical usage characteristic, we created a highly effective method for displaying context and entering information rapidly.
  • We broke through the mobile phone email delay barrier by devising an efficient way to download new messages automatically. We recognized that the key usage scenario—speedy review of the most recent messages—required that these messages be stored on the phone before the user decided to view them.

Our approach captures and evaluates usage by employing state diagram analyses, activity chart modeling, event diagrams, essential use cases, and other flexible modeling techniques. Our extensive experience in systems architecture, security, reliability, usability, and internationalization ensures a broad perspective for understanding and making tradeoffs among a complex set of system design and operational qualities. We see customization is an additional means for configuring user and organizational policies and practices.

To maintain a strong position in the marketplace, firms need to concentrate on the shifts in critical usage patterns that drive technology choices—which in turn drive profitability. We can help you become a truly adaptive organization—one that recognizes and responds not only to rapidly emerging technologies but also to quickly changing usage patterns in the target industry.


*See important explanation of the term "usage." More information is also available under Insights & Ideas.

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