Screen recordings - users are frustrated

Nov 19, 2015

I have done a screen recording using View Mode Steps and then re-used it as Try Mode Steps to give the user an opportunity to try it for themselves.

The output for the Try Mode Steps gave me some problems:  

- the user had to click exactly in the same itty-bitty place as I did in the View Mode Steps (which I have been told can be improved by increasing the size of the hot spot)

- the user has to make the same selections from drop-downs, radio buttons, checkboxes, etc, and do all of this in exactly the same order that I did.  

- my file became quite large and Storyline would crash whenever I tried to publish it.

Does anyone have some ideas to make this better?  I have the .html attached (I took a small sample of the original file).  And unfortunately, I do not have any other software to record my screen. 

3 Replies
Donna Morvan

Hello Linda,

I make use of "Try Mode" a lot because the courses I develop are designed to train users how to use software applications and I can empathize with your users. 

As a course developer, here are some tips I find worked well for me to avoid these issues.

1. Use "Try Mode" as a starting point. 

I don't know if you take it as it is but personally, I use it more as a starting point then I make my edits. Just as has been recommended:

a. Hotspot Issue

     i. Adjust the size of the hotspot - this definitely helps

    ii. Remove the trigger to "Show incorrect layer when clicked outside..." - I find this is what       annoys most users. They want to be able to click around and explore without having that layer showing with each misclick that they got it wrong. Depending on the purpose of your "Try Mode" e.g. if the intent is to explore rather than strictly check for accuracy with no margin for error, you can adjust this accordingly.

b. Sequence

    i. Add instructions/helpful questions for each step - You are right, we can't train all of them to think exactly the way we do or most of the time, there's not just 1 way to go about a process. That said, I find that it helps if you package it as a scenario. I like to swap roles and in these try-mode, they become the trainer and there's a character that asks to be directed on how to things. By asking specific questions for each step, I can better direct them to what they need to click --- I hope that makes sense.

ii. Edit the Try Mode so it's welcoming different ways to go about the process - this goes back to what I mentioned as it being a starting point. Once I have the Try Mode done, I make a lot of edits, add more hotspots, add more slides that branch out to other ways to doing it, edit text entries so it accepts more than just way of spelling it (not-case sensitive). This can get pretty extensive and require a lot of research on your part so you cover, if not all, most of how a certain process is done using a piece of software. In a way, you are creating a full blown simulation of the software. I do this a lot for the courses I develop and these are very much well received and most effective. Again, it really depends on what the purpose is of the Try Mode.

c. File Size

I don't think there is a real way to get around it. Even if you're not using Storyline, the more multimedia elements you use, the bigger it is. I do recommend planning so you can section out your courses better.

The way I go about it that I find is helpful is to section the courses out so I can better control the size of the project. This is also better I find because generally the attention span gets shorter the longer the course is.

That's my 2 cents.

Hope this helps!


Linda Hummel

Thank you, Donna.  I didn't think about removing the trigger to "Show incorrect layer when clicked outside..."  This will definitely help.

I think you're right.  I will have to add more hotspots and slides to make this a better experience for the user.  They didn't want to have to refer to the 1 pager with all of the info that they needed in order to click on the right fields in the right sequence and make the right selections.

In my limited experience, I also thought of Try Mode as a starting point - the text that automatically populates gets edited quite a bit, since it almost never relects what we actually call fields/links/etc. and I deleted some of the slides that just told them to click in a field.



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