CUA Central

A worldwide community for Certified Usability Analysts

CUA of the month – May, 2014

Trevor Stephans
Senior User Experience Designer
Enterprise Holdings

Team CUA Power  - by Jim Garrett


We always enjoy highlighting the successes of our Certified Analysts of the Month and their impact in various industries. But we wondered what would be the impact of several CUA’s on a UX team?

With our CUA of the Month, Trevor Stephans, we find out. Trevor works as Senior User Experience Designer on a UX team of eleven with three other CUA’s. The team has their hands full at Enterprise Holdings which is the umbrella company for Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Alamo and National Car Rental. It has 78,000 employees and over a million cars in their fleet. That’s a lot of usability issues.

How has the CUA training affected your team functioning?

Everyone on the team comes from a different background; the training has allowed us to speak the same language. An example would be the term Heuristic Evaluation. In the past one person might have called it an “expert review” or “site evaluation.” Now we all use the same terminology, which helps when you have a team the size of ours, and clients in common. We also have fun with it by using terms that only a CUA or HCI grad would understand. “Chromosteropsis” is my favorite.

Has it changed the way the company views the team?

We’ve always been treated as professionals but now we are viewed as experts in the field. The certification means something at Enterprise. It is not just another certificate to hang on the wall. Our company has really embraced the UX movement and HFI’s training has helped us along the way.

I would think they probably understand more of what you’re doing and the significance of it

That has been our goal over the last few years—to help people understand what UX is and why it is important to our business. It is especially important in a company like ours where customer service is a way of life. 

Our team believes that being a consumer friendly company doesn’t start and stop at the rental counter; the experience has to be consistent across all channels. The training has helped us communicate that vision.

It seems with this kind of business, customer satisfaction and user experience would be critical.

That could not be truer.  A large percentage of users are booking online so we have to ensure we are meeting their expectations. And, with an increase in mobile traffic we have a whole new set of challenges to overcome. It’s a really exciting time to be a UX professional in the travel industry.

How do you test your users?

We test several different ways. We have a lab here at our headquarters in St. Louis. We bring folks in for moderated in-lab studies. We do remote testing with an online tool that allows us to reach out to consumers.  The tool that we use also allows us to do research like card sorts and tree tests.

What have you found that improved the user experience either on mobile or on the website?

We are currently working on a mobile app for one of our brands. We’ve created what we call a feature analysis study.  The product team, business partners and UX met and discussed several potential app features.  Then we boiled it down to a handful of ideas that we thought would make an app our customers would like to use. 

The team sent those concepts out to members of our loyalty program and had them answer some questions like, “Would you like this?”, “How often would you use this?”, “What would you change about it?” etc…  We used the results to shape the app and create the feature set.

Is there anything specific that you found from your research testing that they were asking for or needing to make their experience more easy and desirable?

There was a lot of great feedback. The two things that really stood out to me were that our users want convenience, and they don’t want to be bothered.

Are you able to then validate the results?

Yes, we will do some follow up testing after launch. In addition to that we have an in-house analytics team that can provide us with more data if needed.

How has taking the CUA training affected your job satisfaction?

For me it has been great. I started my career as a graphic designer creating logos and print products. I had a solid understanding of design but there was always a missing ingredient. I didn’t have what a lot of traditional architects acquired through schooling.  The training and certification validated that I know what I am talking about. I’m proud of the accomplishment; it has changed a lot for me. People believe now.

Yes, and we believe in the impact Trevor and his team have had on the Enterprise business with their CUA power. Human Factors International is pleased to announce Trevor Stephans as the Certified Usability Analyst for May 2014.

To Connect with Trevor on LinkedIn please click Here.

To Follow Trevor via Twitter please link Here.

To download the latest HFI Whitepaper just click Here.
To read Stories on other CUA's click Here.

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