The first thing that strikes so many people when they first see Dentrix Ascend is the simple elegance of the interface. It looks nothing like the popular practice management software of yesteryear. That’s because our team purposefully set out to reimagine the user experience. Our goal was to make the most user-friendly software the dental market has ever seen.
We kicked off the project the same as we had with Dentrix 25 years ago—we spent hours inside dental offices to observe them in action. The difference, of course, was that we didn’t see as many paper-based processes. Most dental offices now have dental software in the front office and in the operatory.
However, we still observed a lot of manual workarounds. Many offices were supplementing their software with sticky notes, using copy and paste, pin boards and office white boards to get the job done. It seemed that, due to limited system integrations, ill-conceived system configurations and poor software design, users found it easier to manually record and transmit information.
As we compiled our observations we brought in usability experts to help us design a superior system. As the project took shape we articulated several principles to guide our development efforts.
- Natural User Interface
- Goals, Problems & Solutions
- Patient Centered Workflow
In our next few posts we’ll explore each of these design principles and show you how they have shaped the user experience.
We’ll also introduce you to the usability testing regime we use with our software testers to judge and refine our product development.