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A New Instruction Manual Design that is Easy to Understand and Makes the User Want to Read It

Our philosophy at Fuji Xerox is to strive to make things easier to use. This philosophy has been implemented in our instruction manuals as well. We wanted to make an easy-to-understand instruction manual, when we came up with an idea: “What if we designed an instruction manual that was easy to read, like a magazine?”
This flash of inspiration gave fuel to the imaginations of our technical writers and designers, and led to the creation of a new instruction manual, the “Learn How to Use It” book.
This manual's format and design have been met with high praise from our customers for being completely different from those of a traditional manual. In order to break free from the conventions of the past, the amount of writing has been drastically reduced and replaced with an abundance of colorful illustrations and screenshots that make it easy for users to visualize the situations and procedures being described. Some pages even tell a story, making the user want to read more.

To many customers, multifunction devices are full of things that they don't understand. They may be unsure how to use them or perform maintenance on them.
“But,” they think, “the instruction manual seems difficult to understand, so I feel reluctant to read it.” Because of our desire to do something to solve this problem, an entirely new kind of instruction manual was born.

We analyzed feedback from customers in the relentless pursuit of creating a manual that was easier for them to understand. The resulting manual features a page layout that is fun to read, including a page introducing convenient functions labeled “These are some of the things you can do!” as well as a pages with titles such as “Saving paper, cost and effort with the fax function” and “Different convenient ways to use the scan function,” that make learning how to use the device feel enjoyable.

Maintenance procedures such as replacing toner cartridges are also rendered in a way that is easier to understand, through many illustrations and symbols. For example, by including pictures of hands and arrows in the illustrations, we made it easy for the user to understand how their hands should actually move when performing different actions. By adding details such as these, our goal is to help users experience an “aha!” moment.