Usability and Accessibility
Also see the Interaction lab for further details.
Usability means increased effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction by the user. These users could be your customers, your employers, your constituents. Too often, especially in government and large businesses, training is used as a costly substitute for usability, and almost as often it fails to meet its goals. Over the years our staff have worked in a range of sectors including finance, retail, telecommunications, government, and charities. We can help you get usability right by:
- developing a usability or user interface strategy and integrating it with your project plan;
- gathering requirements from your users using a range of user research techniques;
- produce the information architecture and conceptual design;
- prototyping user interface designs and draw wireframes;
- get early feedback from users and other project stakeholders;
- supporting you through the implementation phases;
- evaluating your systems or projects (against guidelines, standards or with your target users) to expose key those problems that are preventing users or customers from doing their work or using your products;
- providing specialised training to your staff in all aspects of user interface development.
In addition, a significant proportion of your customers or users may have problems using your products or services through some sort of disability. These disabilities include dyslexia, visual impairments, deafness, physical handicaps. Designing 'accessible' software, products and services makes business and ethical sense. In addition, there is a legal obligation to make products and services accessible to people with disabilities.
Drawing on our expertise we can:
- advise you how to 'design for all' - how to set up a project to ensure that accessibility is a key goal from the beginning and an achievement at the end;
- gather information from disabled users to inform your designs and technical specifications;
- prototype user interface designs with accessibility as a key criterion and get early feedback from disabled users;
- deal with accessibility issues and queries from developers as they arise during development;
- evaluate your current systems against international standards and guidelines to determine how well your current systems comply;
- evaluate designs and systems with disabled users - using their assistive technologies - to expose accessibility problems and make concrete recommendations on how to overcome them;
- train your development staff to 'Design for all'.