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Tools and Templates

User-centered design requires a lot of work, but the amount of effort can be vastly reduced if the consultant has a set of tools and templates that support the process. Templates such as questionnaires for interviews, screeners for usability testing, templates for documenting expert reviews, and usability testing reports are critical to ensure that deliverables are easy to create and standardize. Without these templates in place, the consultant will spend time reinventing everything from scratch. This is expensive and also will extend the project time line.

In addition to the templates, there is significant value in having a set of tools. The consultancy might have remote testing software, a portable or fixed usability testing lab, and software for tasks like cluster analysis of card sort data. Working with tools and templates makes consultants more efficient and the deliverables and results more consistent. But it is even more important that you get these tools and templates so that your company can use them in the future. It makes more sense to use a commercial off-the-shelf solution and have it customized to meet your needs than to invest in creating these resources from scratch. You can certainly create your own templates over time, but having a set to start with saves months of effort.


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