I’ve been super busy recently which you can probably tell by the infrequency of my posts. As a business, Keep It Usable, has grown phenomenally this year and we’ve been working day and night to make sure we do great work for every single one of our clients. We genuinely care about every business we work with and we deliver high quality work for every single client. It’s something I’m passionate about, especially with the growing amount of people entering the ux industry with no formal training or experience. It puts businesses at great risk and damages the ux profession as a whole.
I’m a mentor for the UXPA and I’m in great favour of a regulatory body / chartership to distinguish between different levels of professionals. It’s difficult for me to read between the lines of someones cv or other agencies claims of ux so I can’t imagine how hard it must be for someone commissioning an agency to know who to believe and trust. In fact, one of our clients had a bad experience with quite a well known ux agency. They were failing in their capacity on a number of levels including the delivery of work, so we were called upon to effectively rescue the client, takeover the work and meet the deadline which was by this point very tight. Of course we hit it, and they were incredibly pleased with the work, so much so that we’re now partners. But what is concerning with this story is that even agencies you should be able to trust, because they are well known, you can’t. It really is a minefield out there.
It’s because of our commitment to our clients that we’re going from strength to strength and I’m honoured to be shortlisted for two Women In Business Awards: SME and International business. Keep your fingers crossed for me! :)
I’ve also been invited as a guest on BBC Radio Manchester tomorrow morning. I’ll be choosing several stories form the days papers to chat about. I don’t have much time to watch the news these days so it should be interesting!
BBC Radio Manchester, 29th October, 6.45am and 7.22am
Listen live: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p002mwyt
They seem to have cut the photo in a way that looks like my head’s been chopped off, so erm, just ignore that and read what I say instead :)
Read the article and check out my chopped off head on the guardian.co.uk >>>
I conducted a quick piece of research on the BBC Home page as part of an event called BBC Connected. Did you know it’s the third most visited home page? Yet only a very small percent of visitors actually use it? As our research discovered, most people bypass the page completely, preferring to use the navigation bar or a direct url (usually saved as a bookmark). Here, we share our findings and a few of our design proposals to improve the user experience of the BBC Home page, in particular under-served audience(s).
How do you use the BBC website? Do you ever look at or click on items on the home page? Have you used it more or less since the last redesign? I’d love to hear about your experience. Share your story using the comment box below.
Research by Keepitusable.com
You may or may not be aware that I run a Manchester UX and Usability Agency called Keepitusable (keepitusable.com). We started the business in late 2010 after lots of people told us we should! So, the business was built very much on our existing reputations as great designers and user researchers. I’m predominantly the lead on anything to do with users, research, psychology, ergonomics. Ricardo has more UX and UI design experience than anyone I know so he leads all our design and prototyping work.
Our magic is the unique mix of our skills and experience plus our equal male/female balance that gives us the ability to see things more completely from the audience’s perspective.
We’re really pleased to have made the final four for 2 Salford business awards; Rising Star and Entrepreneur. It was very competitive and we had to really prove the value of user experience during the interviews. This can be quite tough as any UXer will know! At first it was clear they thought we were developers or graphic designers which is understandable as people always try to make sense of something new by comparing it to what they already know – mental models anyone?
Please keep your fingers and toes crossed for us and hopefully we will win at least one of the awards. The finalists are incredibly diverse so it will be interesting to see who wins!
I’ve been featured on Creative Boom talking about the amazing Salford University Carnival held at Islington Mill this week. We had a great time! Below is an extract of the article and if you want to read more just head on over to Creative Boom.
Over a hundred Salford University graphic design students showcased their amazing work at Islington Mill yesterday in a fun carnival themed event organised in conjunction with Designers Northern Alliance.
Representatives from key Manchester and Salford agencies attended the event to inspire and look for the next generation of fresh talent. Keepitusable, Magnetic North, Design by Day, Eskimo Creative, and Code ComputerLove were just some of the industry experts to attend the event.
Lisa Duddington, co-founder of Keepitusable Salford’s first user experience design agency whose clients include the BBC, saw the event as a valuable opportunity to connect with and inspire the next generation of designers.
“It’s so exciting to be part of this event! We know how difficult it can be when you’re first starting your career, so we’re eager to help students and graduates to gain the valuable experience and knowledge they need to succeed in what is an incredibly competitive industry.
We have a fantastic relationship with Salford University and are proud to be able to offer both their students and graduates incredible opportunities to gain industry experience.”
Exclusively designed just for Keepitusable, click on the screenshot below to go to Keepitusable where you can download our (free) exclusive christmas wallpaper for your desktop, iPhone, Android mobile and even your iPad! I’ve got it on my Android device and it looks great!