How to Design Maintainable Coaches
Speaker 2: Okay. John, today we’re gonna talk about how to design and build maintainable Coaches. Just so we have some context, can you give me a definition of a Coach?
John: Coach is IBM’s term for the user interface that a person uses in order to interact with the business process. When you’re maintaining these user interfaces, after you’ve created them, there’s generally two reasons why you need to maintain a Coach.
John: The first is very much an IT oriented reason. Your software, you’re going to a new version of the software, you’re bringing in new libraries. It’s a simple maintain your code kind of reason for needing to go in and touch the code of Coach and maintain a Coach.
John: The second reason, though, is that since these are interfaces that people use to interact with a process, if the requirements of that process change, if that process changes, if the business requirements change, then you’re going to need to go into the Coach and modify the Coach so that you’re changing the interface to the process so that whatever that change is in the process that the participant is now able to interact with the process in that new way.
Speaker 2: So you’re talking about Coach maintenance and Coach maintainability. It sounds like, maybe, during the building process, you should be thinking about Coach maintenance, so what are some important considerations and factors for building and maintaining Coaches?
John: Really, in order to maintain a Coach, you need to be thinking about how are you gonna maintain that Coach at the time that you’re doing your building. There are three important considerations in order to build a maintainable Coach.
John: The first is to document clearly who is going to use the Coach and what are they going to use the Coach to accomplish. What is the work pattern that this Coach has been created in order to support?
John: The second most important consideration is to document the systems that are necessary in order to support the Coach itself. Coaches are used to present information to a person along with operations that that person can accomplish. You must document what are the backend systems that are providing that information and what are the backend systems that are actually allowing the person to accomplish those operations.
John: The third consideration is consistency. In order to build a maintainable Coach, remember, in a project, you may create hundreds of Coaches, so it’s very important that you’re very consistent that all of the Coaches are done with a consistent philosophy, with a consistent approach.
Speaker 2: That’s it. That was all we needed.
Speaker 1: Okay. Let’s cut it.