I needed to change my e-mail client password for the 16th time and for the 16th time could not figure out where to do it. So I went to Help. I searched on "password" and clicked the first topic in the list, named "Change Password." My expectations were high. I got this:
There is not a lot to changing a password, and the Change Password screen in this application is very well designed and easy to use. (It even tells me the rules for an acceptable password.) The only reason I can think of someone going to Help for "Change Password" is exactly the scenario I was in, namely, where do I do it?
Three good rules for user assistance:
- Don't document the screen.
- Don't document the task.
- Do document the probable information gap(s) that could stop a user.