Most of our systems are inside out. We develop our systems to serve our business needs and hope that more or less aligns with our customers needs.

‘Our system doesn’t allow that’

‘Let me see if we can work around that?’

In some cases, these system rules are justified. They can prevent you or others from doing something potentially dangerous or damaging.

But sometimes the rules in these systems are there for expediency. It was just easier to program that way. It is easier to train everyone that way. Believe me, I understand and appreciate that tradeoff.

However, I wonder how much better these systems would be if they were designed from the outside in.

This is really hard to do because end users always come up with scenarios that you didn’t imagine. And you don’t discover that scenario until after you released the product or at a point where it is hard to make a change.

While there are limits to the outside in approach, it is still likely to come up with a better overall solution than the inside out process.