kei’s notes

Visibility of status empowers user control

Visibility in system status provides transparent information to the user. This feedback equips them with better knowledge of the situation where they interact with the system and, hence, empower them to take better action over the control.
==> [Heuristics for interaction design]

The same heuristic principle can be applied to services. When a customer is provided with the service status and/or the forthcoming service procedure, it reduces the opacity by eliminating the unknowns and unnecessary doubts. As a result, it puts the customer at the centre of control with enabling information, give rise to the service’s reliability, and promotes its trustworthiness.
==> [Trust is different from trustworthiness]

By extension, visibility of status is pertinent to collaborative work. By externalising everyone’s status, it creates an objective pool of knowledge where every player is better equipped with information of the status quo and accountability. Thus, they can produce better decision-making related to their own capacity and capability to further their contribution.
==> [Transparency can but not always help establish trust]

Last update: 2020-07-26


Fiore, Stephen M., et al. ‘Toward an Understanding of Macrocognition in Teams: Predicting Processes in Complex Collaborative Contexts’. Human Factors, vol. 52, no. 2, Apr. 2010, pp. 203–24. PubMed, doi:10.1177/0018720810369807.

Harley, Aurora. ‘Visibility of System Status’. Nielsen Norman Group, 3 June 2018,

Visibility of status empowers user control