EERE Web Coordinators Meeting Ju

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					TECHNOLOGY ADVANCEMENT AND OUTREACH

Web Coordinators Meeting
June 30, 2009 Call-in # 301-903-0671

Sarah Kirchen, Drew Bittner, Scott Minos – DOE Michael Thomas, Billie Newland, Wendy Littman – EES Chris Stewart – NREL
eere.energy.gov

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Agenda

• • • • • • •

Around the Room – 15 min (Sarah) New Web Project Process – 20 min (Michael and Billie) Usability Testing – 20 min (Wendy) Social Media Update – 10 min (Drew) New DOE/EERE Branding – 15 min (Scott) EERE Web Redesign – 5 min (Chris) Wrapup – 5 min (Sarah)

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Project Review Team Process
What is the Project Review Team?

It is a group of people assembled to help project teams comply with government and EERE standards.

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Project Review Team Process
Stages of the Process
• • • • • Identification Initiation Development Project Testing / QA Post-Implementation Support

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Project Review Team Process
Identification
At the beginning of your project, you receive an introductory email from us.

PROJECT REVIEW TEAM

You fill out a project information form.
We record the project in our database, and we tell you about our process. Your team meets with our team.

PROJECT TEAM

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Project Review Team Process
Initiation
• You write a project charter. • You create a task list and schedule. • You make a case for any elements you want that are outside the norm. • You send these items to the project facilitator, then meet with us to review them.

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Project Review Team Process
Development
• You plan for the necessary approvals and start working on the project. • You meet with us monthly with a status. • You submit the technology and architecture for approval. • Search code, stat code, news, events, library and features are installed.

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Project Review Team Process
Project Testing / QA
• The project goes through a QA process to assess content, technical standards, and security issues. • Your EERE program reviews the project. • You meet with the Project Review Team again at that point, and any post-launch points of action and milestones are established. • We give you the go-live authorization.

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Project Review Team Process
Post-Implementation Support
• You meet with us monthly to run through any outstanding points of action and milestones.

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Project Review Team Process
Your Roles and Responsibilities as the Project Team
• • • • Information Approvals Justification Updates

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Project Review Team Process
Provide us with all required information about your project.
• • • • • • Project Information Form Project Charter Project Task List and Schedule Content and Architecture Justification of Nonstandard Requests Monthly Status

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Project Review Team Process
Schedule all necessary approvals on your end.
• You will develop a schedule with input from your clients, approvers and us, the Project Review Team. • From this will come the needed approvals for the project.

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Project Review Team Process
Justify any nonstandard requests.
• Our communication standards keep a sharp, organized, consistent look and feel to the Web sites. Prepare to make a very good case for anything you need that’s outside the norm.

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Project Review Team Process
Keep us informed.
• Let us know how the project is going at monthly status meetings during development, and in monthly status meetings after launch, to keep everything on track for any outstanding points of action and milestones.

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Project Review Team Process
One last note …
Refer to the Communication Standards site early and often during your project for: • Web Project Management Guidelines • Web Content Guidelines • Web Technical Guidelines

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Usability in a Nutshell
Agenda
• • • • What is usability? Why does it matter? Tools of the trade Getting the most bang for your buck

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Usability in a Nutshell
What is Usability, Anyway?
Usability measures how easy it is to accomplish a particular task using a particular tool. • Concept has been around longer than the Web. • Used to evaluate many different types of products. Idea is simple: • Give users what they want, the way they want it. • Don’t create obstacles.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Why Bother?
Incorporating usability techniques into your design process makes smart business sense because: 1. It allows you to align user goals and business goals. 2. Customers who can’t find information on your site will make uninformed decisions – then you have to spend money correcting those decisions. 3. Customers who have a bad experience on Web sites often view the sponsoring organizations as untrustworthy. 4. Customers who can’t complete tasks on your sites instead contact the information center, or email you – all of which increase the cost of doing business. 5. According to a 1983 software maintenance book – 80% of maintenance comes from unforeseen or unmet user requirements. 6. Management cares about “risk and embarrassment.”
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Usability in a Nutshell
Less Usable Design = More Hidden Costs
Increased downstream costs

Training Help desk Product revision Implementation Detailed design UI structure User tasks/ bus goals

Rush through these steps

Resource investment Inspired by: Human Factors International
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Usability in a Nutshell
More Usable Design = Less Hidden Costs
Reduced downstream costs

Training Help desk Product revision Implementation Detailed design User interface structure User task analysis/business goals

Incorporating usability techniques early on

Resource investment Inspired by: Human Factors International
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Usability in a Nutshell
If You Take Nothing Else Away from This….
1) Anything you can do is better than doing nothing! 2) You (or your boss) are not the typical user.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Tools of the Trade – Initial Research Phase
Questions: • Who is my audience? • What do they want to do? • Can they do what they want to do successfully on our current site? • What are our business goals? Usability techniques: • User profiles and personas • Surveys • Interviews • Focus groups • User observation
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Usability in a Nutshell
User Profiles, Personas, and Scenarios
User profiles: Description of a particular user group, including demographic information, experience, expectations. Persona: A fictitious person created to represent the information from the user profile. Scenario: A description of a task your user (or persona) may want to accomplish, and the requirements/constraints your user may have in accomplishing that task. Useful for: • Focusing in on who your target audience is. • Clarifying assumptions about those users and their tasks. • Understanding how a user might perform a task, and the design implications that has.
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Usability in a Nutshell
Sample Persona and Scenario
Persona: John Greene, Business Traveler • 37 years old software engineer • Travels for work 3-4 times each year, and for pleasure 1-2 times each year. • Has a wife and two children, ages 2 and 4. • Enjoys his job, but his family comes first. • Is considered firm and fair. • Is fairly computer savvy. Scenario: Find a Flight John wants to plan a trip from Chicago to LA to visit family. He is bringing his wife and kids along, and wants to go for about 4 days. It will have to be over the weekend, because his wife doesn’t have much leave left this year. He wants the cheapest fare he can get, and he’ll need to rent a car big enough to haul luggage for 4. He’s staying with family, so no hotel is needed. He prefers to use Jet Blue, but is flexible if the price is right. He has 30 minutes during his lunch hour to research his travel, so he’s in a hurry. If the price looks good, he also hopes to book some or all of his reservations with a credit card.
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Usability in a Nutshell
Surveys
Useful for: • Casting a wide net quickly. • Fast and cheap way to establish top tasks and/or problems with a current site.

Weaknesses: • Can be difficult to get a representative sample. • No opportunity for follow up questions.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Interviews
Useful for: • Getting more in depth information. • Ability to ask open ended questions and follow up questions.

Weaknesses: • Can be time consuming. • Interact with fewer participants.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Focus Groups
Best done with 8-10 participants. Useful for: • Brainstorming, generating ideas and getting feedback. • Best used very early in the development process. Weaknesses: • Participants may influence each other. • Talking is different from doing.

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Usability in a Nutshell
User Observation
Useful for: • Understanding how users try to accomplish particular tasks, and seeing roadblocks they encounter. • Best done after you’ve got a good understanding of the task, and perhaps have done interviews.

Weaknesses: • Can be time consuming. • Interact with fewer participants.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Tools of the Trade – Preparing for Design
Questions: • What are the steps users would take to accomplish their tasks? • How should I organize the site so it is intuitive to users? Usability techniques: • Task analysis • Card sort

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Usability in a Nutshell
Task Analysis
Useful for:
• Identifying all the tasks that will be performed, the steps to completion, and the order of completion. • Streamlining tasks to remove steps or other barriers to task completion. Differs from the scenarios because this covers all tasks, while a scenario describes one possible path through the range of tasks. Often shown as a flow chart or table.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Card Sort
Useful for: • Understanding how your users group and label the information that will go on your site. Can be done online or by hand.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Tools of the Trade – Testing your Design
Question: • Can my users accomplish their top tasks with my architecture? Usability techniques: • Reverse card sort • Paper prototyping

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Usability in a Nutshell
Reverse Card Sort
Useful for: • Validating the way you are grouping and labeling the information on your site. • Done the same way a regular card sort is, except that you predefine the categories into which the user can sort items.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Paper Prototyping
A paper prototype, or wireframe, is a very simple black and white illustration showing the location and labels for the major elements on your user interface. Useful for: • Determining if users can find information on your new user interface. • Catching biggest usability problems before spending $ on graphical mockups. • Quick to develop and test. Weaknesses: • Will miss issues resulting from colors/layout; can get around this by also testing an advanced prototype.

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Usability in a Nutshell
Sample Paper Prototype (Wireframe)

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Usability in a Nutshell
Tips for Getting the Most Bang for your Buck
Remember: Anything you can do is better than doing nothing! • • • • • Focus first on what will make the most difference to the most users. Test as early as possible in the process. Test several times throughout the course of your project. Test with a minimum of 5 people; use more if you can. If data appears inconsistent, do a few more sessions.

Example of an inexpensive site redesign that incorporates usability: • Do an online survey to get info from users on top tasks/what’s not working. • Interview ~ 5 users and watch them try to complete top tasks from survey. • Maybe ask 5-10 users to complete an online card sort. • Use the feedback to develop your info architecture and paper prototypes. • Test paper prototypes with ~ 5 people; alter wireframes. • Build site; watch a few users complete top tasks on new site; tweak.
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Usability in a Nutshell
Contact Information
Wendy Littman wendy.littman@hq.doe.gov 301-525-7521

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Social Media Update
• EERE Blogging Tool
– We used Typepad to pilot blogs – EERE is moving forward with installing its own blogging tool – Programs will have the ability to create and administer blogs of their own – EERE’s blogging guidance is in review with DOE General Counsel – EERE’s blog charter is being reviewed by EERE’s cybersecurity specialists.

• Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube
– DOE is still developing guidance for social media applications – This is an excellent time to develop your strategy.

•

Social Media Strategy
– – – Social media tools should be part of a comprehensive communications plan EERE wants a coordinated social media presence Submit your ideas to Drew Bittner for review and approval.
eere.energy.gov

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DOE/EERE Branding
Purpose of Updated Branding
• DOE/EERE research, development, and deployment activities are in forefront of the public, politics, and industry • DOE/EERE needs to update its design to improve accessibility of information to public, media, and other stakeholders • Current identity is 7 years old
– Dated look may negatively impact effectiveness of message

• Use EERE funds efficiently by having one set of templates for everyone to use
– Not pay for multiple unique design systems

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DOE/EERE Branding
Project Goals
• Provide unified, professional, and modern identity system for all DOE/EERE communications products • Create an engaging design to inspire audiences to take action • Take DOE/EERE to the next level in terms of look and feel while still representing the organization as the federal government’s premier authority on RE/EE technologies • Create an identity system and guidance for programs to implement

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DOE/EERE Branding
Elements
• • • • New color palette New typeface New DOE/EERE logo Program logos positioned below DOE/EERE logo to establish branding hierarchy • Marketing URLs • No more bluelines • No more “A Strong Energy Portfolio for a Strong America” statement

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DOE/EERE Branding
Templates
• Technical documents (e.g fact sheets) • Outreach documents (e.g, case studies and pocket folders) • Exhibits • PowerPoint • Business cards • Web banners • Web template

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DOE/EERE Branding

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DOE/EERE Branding
Typefaces
• Gotham is a modern, clean, geometric typeface • EERE to use Gotham for headlines, Times Roman for body copy • Arial used in electronic communications

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DOE/EERE Branding
Color Palette
• Updated colors are contemporary and relevant • Color palette is flexible and able to address different tones of messages

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DOE/EERE Branding
Rollout to Programs
• Posting new templates and information on the Communication Standards site in July • “Soft launch”
– Phil West approved use of new identity and templates – Formal launch after the new Assistant Secretary Cathy Zoi approves the new identity

• “Formal launch”
– Once approved, formal roll out to the programs via:
• E-mail announcements • Webcast

• Contact Scott Minos at scott.minos@ee.doe.gov
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EERE Web Redesign

• • • •

Project goals Process is underway Iterative improvements We invite your feedback and comments

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Wrap Up
Next Meeting
• Thursday July 23, 2009 • 1:30 – 3:00 pm • Room 6A-110

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