CUA of the Month – August, 2012

Josue Calderon
"As the only Certified Usability Analyst on our team, my goal is to impart knowledge to the rest of the team. Usability plays a crucial role in meeting the needs of our customers and meeting our business objectives."
 
Josue Calderon
Web Supervisor,
Robbins Brothers

Bringing customers from the web into the store

by Sheldon Kreger

As successful companies expand and grow, the opportunity arises for improvement. Because the web is a primary source of new customers – and sales – a strong web presence is now mandatory in the modern world. Josue Calderon – our CUA of the Month – is an expert who helps expanding businesses create web sites and applications which help them meet their goals.

“I work for a company called Robbins Brothers. Their core business is selling engagement rings. They have stores in California and Texas. I was brought in to help establish a solid user centered design process in efforts to improve their overall online experience.”

Robbins Brothers understands that a well-designed web site can drive customers to their brick-and-mortar shops. Josue and his team are working to build a site which directs new customers to Robbins Brothers stores.

“The primary challenge is to convert people from the web to walking into the store. It's not a traditional e-commerce site, since we're not primarily focused on selling online. We are really working to create a more personal feel and relationship with our customers.”

Great web sites require great expertise in many areas. Josue works with designers, back end programmers, and marketing staff to create something that stands out in the crowd. As the lead UX professional, Josue's job involves putting all of the pieces together to create a site with great user experience.

“Another exciting part of our work is that we sit within a marketing team, which handles writing all of the copy for the site. This means that we have control over the voicing and messaging to meet our goals.”

Clearly, Josue's work demands understanding of all aspects of web site development. It's no accident that he has the knowledge required for such a task.

“In middle school, I had an opportunity to work on some web sites for Cal State Los Angeles. I must have been 12 or 13, and they started teaching me HTML. I was hooked, so excited that I could build things for the web! Ever since then, I've been designing sites and working for companies like Guitar Center and Herbalife International, and consulting for globally recognized brands.”

“I've been fortunate enough to go through several roles involved in web application development –starting off as a designer at a small company, and moving up as a developer. I've done back end work, as well as business analysis. I enjoy all of those things, but right now I'm focusing on UI/UX.”

So, what inspired Josue to focus on usability?

“In college, I started reading books about usability, and really started to explore many of the popular internet- focused blogs on the web. There wasn't anything in my school curriculum which focused on user experience, so it seemed to me that there were only a handful of people championing usability.”

With this spark of interest, an opportunity arose for Josue.

“After finishing my undergraduate work, one of the companies I worked for recognized my interest in usability, and sent me to train with HFI. That's when I realized that there was a whole community of professionals who focus on user experience as their work. I had the opportunity to ask questions to both the trainers and other students – many of whom had similar backgrounds as I did. It was very enlightening to gain perspective on how specializing in user experience could fuel an exciting career.”

As Josue works on more and more projects, he continues to hone his skills. By working with his team members, Josue is able to not only get the job done, but he hopes to share knowledge with his peers.

“As the only certified usability analyst (CUA) on our team, my goal is to impart knowledge to the rest of the team. We use research from books, analytics, user testing, and other materials to help make design decisions.  At the end of the day, usability plays a crucial role in meeting the needs of our customers and meeting our business objectives.  I’m fortunate enough to be a part of a company and team which champions usability.”

CUA of the Month

Each month we highlight the successes and achievements of a different member of our CUA community. If you are a Certified Usability Analyst and would like to be considered for CUA of the Month recognition, please send a brief professional bio to hfi@humanfactors.com

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Reviewed: 18 Mar 2014

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Reviewed: 18 Mar 2014

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