Matt Donovan on Automating the In-Between

Automate This! Chances are, there’s at least one step in your process that users shouldn’t have to do themselves. Why?

Quote, “I hate automatic paper towel dispensers. Waving may hand back and forth in front of that thing is only slightly less annoying than turning a crank…Since most public faucets are automatic, why not tie the dispenser sensor in with the faucet sensor? If I put my hands under the faucet, I’m going to need a towel, right? The dispenser could anticipate that and feed out a towel when the water turns on.” — Matt Donovan, excerpted from his post Automate This!

I love this kind of solutions-oriented thinking that doesn’t start with what currently exists and work from there, but seriously takes things to their most basic level and asks, “wait, why is THAT there?” with the goal to make the path from initial touchpoint to end result that much quicker. This works for design, environments, signage, check-in processes and so much more.

Find the step that doesn’t need to be a step and make it automatic.