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World Usability Day Reminds Us of the Importance of User-Centered Design

The earth as seen from space

Annual World Usability Day takes place this Thursday on November 11! This internationally observed day highlights the importance of incorporating User-Centered Design (UCD) principles into all services and products. On this day “events occur around the world that bring together different communities to celebrate how we can make our world easy for all.”

It is vital that governments, non-profits, and enterprises develop products and offer services that are designed with the user in mind to increase usability and usefulness. From a website that isn’t accessible for people with disabilities, to confusing signage at a hospital that hinders a patient’s ability to navigate to the correct area (wayfinding) - not thinking about the end user results in unpleasant and frustrating experiences that are bad for your brand, customer satisfaction, and ultimately your business. User-Centered Design (UCD) eliminates this stressor by researching what your users need and testing your product or service with real users before spending money on completely developing a product or mapping out a service that may end up not aligning with the user’s needs. UCD practices can include user research, testing, and evaluation, content strategy, prototyping, and more.

This year’s World Usability Day theme is “Design of our Online World: Trust, Ethics and Integrity” which will focus on creating trust online, understanding the ethical implications of design, and how to design for accessibility. You can get involved by joining their community, becoming a sponsor or by volunteering. View all the events taking place on November 11thon the World Usability Day website.