I recently had an experience which reinforced how important it is to provide answers and explanations at the moment of need. Let me share the story with you.
On a trip to a conference from Chicago to Las Vegas, I was booking parking at a lot near O'Hare airport. Going through and selecting the parking option, it first showed me the subtotal as $69.50. But when I got to the final checkout, it showed me the total to be $80.68.
I felt frustrated and wondered why the final total was $11.18 more than the subtotal. At that point, I was ready to search for a different parking lot option. But then I saw the inline help icon right next to Taxes & Fees. I hovered over it and it gave me the breakdown as shown in the image below.
Explanation of Taxes and Fees
I have to admit that I was still not happy about paying all these fees, but my frustration was definitely alleviated quite a bit because I received a quick answer to the question I had in mind. I went through with the transaction and this facility was able to keep my business.
We have to ask ourselves:
How much of this type of frustration do our users deal with on a regular basis within our internal enterprise applications?
When they get frustrated, why isn't inline help available to them at their moment of need to alleviate their frustration?
These are the exact type of frustrations we solve for at VisualSP. Our customers implement an enterprise wide help platform using our application so no matter which application (any enterprise web application) the users navigate to, they always have the answers they need in context of their environment, in the flow of their work and at the moment of their need.
Following images show some examples of how helpful these types of inline help options can be in the form of icons, links and invisible launchers directly on top of elements.
Inline help icon providing an explanation
Link next to an element explaining what it's all about
Invisible launcher showing a tooltip when an element is hovered over
Let's strive to support and train our users just-in-time instead of just-in-case by providing excellent employee experiences. This in turn pays off dividends in the form of higher retention of employees, increased morale and huge cost savings in support. It's a win-win situation for everyone! Let us know if we can help.