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Creative Design Services
Aivea Creative Design Services
Aivea offers expertise and professional consulting services in the following areas of Creative Design Services focusing on Enterprise Web Applications and SharePoint:
User Research - Do you know what your users want? Do you know what they like and dislike? Have you talked with them yet? It's impossible to create any kind of user-centered design without knowing who your users are. Don't leave your end users out of the design by only worrying about the business requirements. User requirements gathering is one of the most important steps in building a usable interface. The following are some methods and tools we implement for conducting user research:
  • Interviews
  • Surveys
  • Contextual Inquiry
  • Task Analysis
  • Personas
Usability Testing - Don't let the launch of your website be the first time your website or application is put in front of a user. You can find out long before your website goes live if it meets your users needs. There are many different testing methods we can employ early in the design process to ensure that your website or application is one that can be used efficiently and without frustration.
During a usability test we watch how users interact with a prototype or website to see if the interface is inhibiting users from accomplishing their desired goals.

Our process below may differ slightly based on your projects needs:
  • Define what we are testing
  • Define who we are testing
  • Define the tasks we are testing
  • Recruit users
  • Prepare the test
  • Facilitate testing
  • Present the findings
Interaction Design and Visual Design - Good design does not happen by accident. It's an iterative process that involves utilizing user research to make sure your design decisions are focused on what matters most, the end user. Deciding on where and how crucial information is displayed on a webpage and figuring out the logical flow for your web applications is only half the battle. The other crucial piece of the puzzle is documenting your design so that the business team, developers, and designers are all on the same page.
Interaction design involves designing and documenting the user flow and interface screens. The objective of our interaction design documents is to easily explain how users will interact with a website or application. We believe in having a user-centered design methodology when it comes to creating interfaces. In order to understand the best way to represent information on a screen, or how a specific user should traverse a website, we conduct in-depth user research and a do an extensive competitive analysis. We refer to the user research in an effort to always keep the user's needs and goals at the forefront of our design decisions. If available, we will also examine your existing log files to understand the current user paths.

The following are some of the documentation methods Aivea prefer to use when doing interaction design:
  • Wireframing - A wireframe is simply a sketch of how the layout of a webpage should look and behave. Key page elements and their location are decided on and drafted. Proposed behavior, structure, navigation, and content layout are all captured within the wireframe. We can tailor our wireframes to include specific details that are important to the intended audience. For instance, if the wireframes are going to be utilized by the development team we will be sure to include annotations specific to functionality. You can think of a wireframe as the blueprint for your website.
  • User Flows and Storyboarding - Creating a logical and straightforward flow of the different screens that are wireframed is the crux of producing a usable application. We conduct flowcharting and storyboarding to decide on what the exact sequence of screens should be that a user has to traverse to complete a desired task. Flowcharting is a very high-level conceptual model of the different possible design flows. You can think of a flowchart as a decision tree for the user experience (i.e. If the user does "x" show screen "y"). Storyboarding is simply a much more defined flowchart. A storyboard is like a wireframe, but instead of just one sketch, a series of detailed interfaces are wireframed in order to step through a sequence of screens.
  • Prototyping - Prototyping is typically done in preparation for a usability test. A few different types of prototypes that can be created such as Flash, SilverLight, HTML/CSS and Clickable PDF.
Information Architecture - Can your users find the information they need on your website? Does your search functionality actually yield appropriate results? Navigation systems can be tricky. Making sure the content you work hard to create is actually being found is imperative to providing a good user experience.
Information architecture is the process of categorizing and labeling content in a way that makes sense to your users so they can navigate your site with ease and find what they need. It's impossible to attain good usability without having a solid information architecture. We utilize the following tools and methods to make sure your users can find the information they are looking for on your website or application:
  • Content Inventories - A content inventory is basically a listing off all the content that currently exists on a website. The page address and title as well as other important meta data are all documented in a spreadsheet. After compiling a content inventory we gain an in-depth knowledge of exactly what information is currently available and how it's organized.

  • Card Sorting - Your users are truly the only ones that can tell you if your navigation fits their needs. Get their input on your architecture upfront by conducting a card sort. A card sort is a usability test that focuses on understanding exactly how your users think about the contents of your website. During a card sort a user will sort a pile of cards, labeled with a piece of content, into different categories that make sense to them. When they are finished they will label these categories. After conducting a few card sorts with different users you will start to see patterns and overlap in how your users think about your content. You can use the data collected from this exercise to build an architecture that reflects how you know your users would look for information on your website.

  • Contextual Inquiry - A contextual inquiry involves spending time with your users and watching how they live and work. The idea is to study and observe people in their own environment in order to better understand how your product can fit into their routine and help them. It entails leaving the office and entering the homes and workplaces of your users to uncover their needs.

  • Site Maps - A site map documents the pages that will be on a website or application and their relationship to each other. Visually, they resemble organizational charts. Site maps can also convey certain characteristics about the pages themselves, such as: whether or not they are dynamic or static, the type of layout or template they will use, if the page contains a form, etc. Site maps are typically relied on as the roadmap for your website.
Your benefits when Aivea works for you:
Microsoft® Gold Certified Partner
State of the art offices in Beaverton, OR, Seattle, WA, Sunnyvale, CA, New York, NY and Bangalore, India.
Adoption of proven methodologies to ensure timely delivery of projects.
Dedicated Creative Design and Development centers..
Flexible delivery models to suit client needs..
Promotes partnership approach that leads to long-term relationship with the clients..
Provides a vast pool of highly motivated and skilled employees to staff any kind of operation (Onsite/offsite/offshore). .
Resources that span the entire gamut of technology offerings.
Complies with full protection of intellectual property.
Ability to ramp up/down team size based on project requirements.
Ability to provide 24X7 support for critical applications.
Quality assurance done internally (within the project) and externally (by the quality assurance team) governed by our CMM Level 4 procedures.
Understands the IT initiatives of the client and will identify areas where we can add value.
Jointly prepares overall partnership objective.
Framework to define schedules, acceptance criteria, team-structure, client contact, and project and partnership steering committee and risk mitigation strategies.
Please contact us at sales@aivea.com or http://www.aivea.com/aivearfq.htm or call 1-800-779-7506 to get a no obligation needs assessment and proposal for your Creative Design project.
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" It has been my pleasure working with Aivea on one of the most significant Microsoft SharePoint 2007 implementations in the US Army to date.

Aivea successfully lead a team of 20 engineers through complex and fast-paced planning, customization and deployment integrating 60 different organizations and 1000s of soldiers at Fort Bliss US Army base.

I am personally thankful for the attention to detail, dedication and commitment on the part of Aivea to accomplish this critical mission for Harris and United States Army."

Curtis P. Geiger
Program Manager, US Army
Fort Bliss, TX

"Aivea’s quality focus, execution excellence & technology expertise combined with their flexible approach allowed us to implement our enterprise SharePoint 2007 project in record time.

We strive to offer the highest level of value and convenience to our customers, and we are pleased that we found in Aivea, a partner who shares similar values"

Maju Kuruvilla
Director of Engineering
Milliman, Inc.
Seattle, WA

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