Each year when we roll into August I breathe a silent sigh of relief – with so many people on holiday it’s usually a quiet month for us. But not this year… We’ve recently won a number of large projects so have been spending much of July getting these up and running. As such, we’ve got a crammed schedule of work in August so it’s all hands on deck in the office.
I did however find time to go down to the Revolution offices in Hammersmith (in West London) to take part in a podcast interview for their Insider’s Guide to Usability. The podcast is now live on their site so if you want to hear my rambles then feel free to have a listen. The thing I find most ironic though is that on this web page, a guide to usability, it’s actually really difficult to find the link to the podcast!
We were also able to get our third annual council report out last month, with some interesting findings. The report, Local Council Websites: Inching in the Right Direction (free download), evaluates the usability of the top 20 council websites (as per the recent Socitm report). Although the sites have improved since last year there’s still (unsurprisingly) great room for improvement especially with regards to their online transactions. If these are the 20 best council websites in the UK then that doesn’t say much about the others…
If you’re a fellow IMRG member then you may have met our head of user experience, Elisa, at theirUsability and User Experience Workshop earlier in July. In her presentation on persuasive design, Elisa highlighted how usability can be used in conjunction with persuasion, with her particularly focusing on 6 key principles of social influence (e.g. scarcity, social validation). The presentation is available for download from the IMRG site (members only). FYI you can now keep up-to-date with what we’re doing with our new upcoming events page on the site.
That’s it from me for this month, as usual feel free to post any questions you may have. And if you’ve got 30 seconds to spare then please vote in our latest poll about what the key factor in purchasing a content management system would be for you. We’ve had about 500 votes to-date so if you vote you’ll also be able to see the results so far.