Most customers that buy a baby gate rely on the seer manual included to help guide them through this assembly. Unfortunately, the majority of those that purchase the Munchkin Extended Baby Gate will find themselves very unsatisfied with the included user manual instructions. I know all too well how frustrating a poorly written user manual can be because I purchased the Munchkin Extended Baby Gate, and I had to suffer through the poor excuse of a manual provided.
While the guide had some of the important pieces we expect from a solid user manual such as warranty information, hazard details, and equipment information; the manual does not however properly consider its audience. The manual also fails in its ease of use, and its document design. Ethical Instructions It is important for any successful user manual to be ethical. A key factor in doing this is to highlight the potential hazards and warnings involved in the product or its assembly. The Munchkin Extend Baby Gate user manual does have a section to outline warnings.
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It has a bold face heading and an icon to help ensure it stands out and is not overlooked. Equipment & Parts and equipment. This particular guide has a section that specifies included equipment and needed tools. Each piece is labeled with a letter so that it’s easy to preference, and there is an indication of the quantity of each piece. Additional Components A successful user manual guide should also contain some additional pieces. The manual for this baby gate did include a section providing information on its limited warranty which is useful to the audience.
In addition, the manual does provide corporate contact information. A section that stands out as questions provides a web site and phone number the user can utilize if needed. THE BAD Audience Recognition The Munchkin Extended Baby Gate user manual does a poor Job of considering its audience. The assumption is clearly made that all of the users are visual learners. In addition, they did not consider that the audience may not be high tech when it comes to constructing something. The manual uses absolutely no words, but only visual graphics.
This leaves many of the steps open to different interpretations and confusion. Ease of Use Another area this user manual fails in is its ease of use. It is not at all easy for the audience to find what they’re looking for if needed. The document contains no sections, no headings, no labels, and as mentioned, no written word instructions. It Just Gets Worse In addition to the bad already described, there are several other areas this user manual failed to be successful. The document is poorly developed in that you cannot easily determine which step is next.
The user manual also fails in its consistency and document design. The same numbers are used in more than one area and cause confusion. There is a lack of direction without words and headings. Additionally, the steps are overloaded and are not concise. There are multiple steps taking place in a single graphic and on a single page. The poor use of white space contribute to this documents demise as well As we know, a functioning baby gate can serve an important purpose. In order to fulfill this purpose however, the gate must be properly assembled.
The ease and success of said assembly depends upon the quality of the user guide provided. The Munchkin Extended Baby Gate user manual is of subpart quality and fails to be a successful user manual. While it contains some important pieces like a warnings section and list of equipment, we cannot overlook the flaws including the lack of audience recognition, the lack of written instructions, and the terrible document design. There is no doubt that this user manual needs revamped.