CUA of the Month – April, 2013

Jeff Wilbur
"Communicating what the issues are has been very effective in building credibility. Tthe overall process one gets from CUA training has been extremely helpful."
Jeff Wilbur
Certified Usability Analyst

Implementing Usability in a Large Corporation

by Jim Garrett

Our Certified Usability Analyst (CUA) of the Month is Jeff Wilbur. Jeff has been at Chevron® for thirty-one years and is part of a relatively small usability team of five, all of whom are CUAs from Human Factors International (HFI). Their assignment: to institutionalize usability within the Chevron IT culture.

Jeff, what is your title and role at Chevron?

My job title is Certified Usability Analyst. I work in Chevron’s Information Management Company in the UX (User Experience) Team. This year we are focused on improving organizational capability through user-centered design practices. We’re doing that for the entire IT function throughout the company.

Who are the users you are targeting?

We are focusing on applications for our internal end-users. Chevron has over 57,000 employees around the world. Our organizational capability effort is to build up the competency of the people that are going to be playing a key role in improving usability for our internally-facing solutions.

Can you give an example of some of the projects that you’re going to launch and what some of the usability work will be?

One is that we’re going to be updating the software in our conferencing application that we use throughout the company to conduct remote meetings. We will assess which product options work best from the usability perspective. Obviously there’ll be lots and lots of other criteria but usability will be one of them.

Are there any other projects either current or upcoming you’ll be working on?

We just wrapped up a project working with the group that introduced smart devices to the company in order to connect our global workforce. They wanted us to come up with usability standards, processes and design patterns. In addition, we needed to figure out how to integrate usability work into an agile software development methodology.

The company does technical architectural reviews for IT projects and our corporate CIO decided that usability should be included in these architectural reviews. This was exciting because it says our leadership is really supporting usability. Sharon Allen, our first HFI CUA, was a lead author on assembling materials to help architects recognize what a good usability effort looks like. It involved laying out some simple practices – user-centered design practices, especially about understanding users – and evaluating how well the solution works. I think this is going to make a big difference.

As a matter of fact, I just talked to a project lead whose project was held up because the architectural reviewer saw that no usability work had been done. He contacted me and we walked him through the appropriate usability activities. The other day he showed us his work and he did a great job. He even hung out in his users’ offices to watch them do their work. He came away with a much better understanding of his users, their tasks, and their working environment.

So management is on board with institutionalizing usability in the company?

They are. Our vision is to weave usability into the existing fabric of our IT application deliver process. We’ve got to start somewhere so we’re going to get teams to do simpler things first then raise the bar gradually. We’ve seen that approach work in other company programs.

What do you think was the most significant thing that you’ve learned in your CUA training?

I think it might be the importance of observation as opposed to asking users if something is usable – to be evidence-based. The training gave us a foundation in how to be evidence-based. It has come in handy for me. I can recall being in meetings where I could just sort of calmly say “Well you know, based on the user behavior we saw in our usability testing, I’d be really worried about that alternative.” The other folks in the meeting have actually said “Oh, you researched that. OK, let’s not do it that way then.”

In your observation with the users, what kind of feedback do you get from their satisfaction and increased ease of use?

Typically when we are engaged with a project the satisfaction increases fairly significantly. We’re also looking at how effective it is for them and at the process error rates. I think almost uniformly users love it. I’ve heard so many people say, “I’m so glad that you’re paying attention to all this.”

Has anything surprising come up for you in any of your usability or testing work?

Often you think something is a good idea but it ends up not testing very well. That definitely happens. Also, sometimes you think to yourself there’s going to be a problem with a certain feature and it turns out to work fine. So that happens too.

What insights do you feel make for more effective observing?

One of the things that come to mind is being careful as you’re observing not to draw too many conclusions or inferences right away, but simply watch and see what is actually happening. Later you’ll draw conclusions, but if you can put that aside until after you’ve seen and recorded or understood what they did, the results will be more objective.

Has there been something from CUA training you’ve been able to apply to your work where you’ve seen some significant results?

Well, it’s definitely the usability testing and reporting it. I would say communicating what the issues are has been very effective in building credibility. I would say also the overall process one gets from the training has been extremely helpful.

What would you say to somebody thinking of taking the CUA training?

I would recommend they take it if they’re interested in working in the user experience area. However, you can’t just take it and forget it; you need to apply it, practice it and keep learning through continuing education.

Thank you, Jeff, for demonstrating the power of a small, well-trained usability team to have far reaching influence in a large corporate icon such as Chevron. We are pleased to announce Jeff Wilbur as HFI’s Certified Analyst of the Month.

The statements and comments provided herein are only the opinions of Jeff Wilbur, and do not necessarily represent those of Chevron, its management, or any of Chevron’s affiliates.

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

Privacy policy

Reviewed: 18 Mar 2014

This Privacy Policy governs the manner in which Human Factors International, Inc., an Iowa corporation ("HFI") collects, uses, maintains and discloses information collected from users (each, a "User") of its website and any derivative or affiliated websites on which this Privacy Policy is posted (collectively, the "Website"). HFI reserves the right, at its discretion, to change, modify, add or remove portions of this Privacy Policy at any time by posting such changes to this page. You understand that you have the affirmative obligation to check this Privacy Policy periodically for changes, and you hereby agree to periodically review this Privacy Policy for such changes. The continued use of the Website following the posting of changes to this Privacy Policy constitutes an acceptance of those changes.


HFI may use "cookies" or "web beacons" to track how Users use the Website. A cookie is a piece of software that a web server can store on Users’ PCs and use to identify Users should they visit the Website again. Users may adjust their web browser software if they do not wish to accept cookies. To withdraw your consent after accepting a cookie, delete the cookie from your computer.


HFI believes that every User should know how it utilizes the information collected from Users. The Website is not directed at children under 13 years of age, and HFI does not knowingly collect personally identifiable information from children under 13 years of age online. Please note that the Website may contain links to other websites. These linked sites may not be operated or controlled by HFI. HFI is not responsible for the privacy practices of these or any other websites, and you access these websites entirely at your own risk. HFI recommends that you review the privacy practices of any other websites that you choose to visit.

HFI is based, and this website is hosted, in the United States of America. If User is from the European Union or other regions of the world with laws governing data collection and use that may differ from U.S. law and User is registering an account on the Website, visiting the Website, purchasing products or services from HFI or the Website, or otherwise using the Website, please note that any personally identifiable information that User provides to HFI will be transferred to the United States. Any such personally identifiable information provided will be processed and stored in the United States by HFI or a service provider acting on its behalf. By providing your personally identifiable information, User hereby specifically and expressly consents to such transfer and processing and the uses and disclosures set forth herein.

In the course of its business, HFI may perform expert reviews, usability testing, and other consulting work where personal privacy is a concern. HFI believes in the importance of protecting personal information, and may use measures to provide this protection, including, but not limited to, using consent forms for participants or "dummy" test data.

The Information HFI Collects

Users browsing the Website without registering an account or affirmatively providing personally identifiable information to HFI do so anonymously. Otherwise, HFI may collect personally identifiable information from Users in a variety of ways. Personally identifiable information may include, without limitation, (i)contact data (such as a User’s name, mailing and e-mail addresses, and phone number); (ii)demographic data (such as a User’s zip code, age and income); (iii) financial information collected to process purchases made from HFI via the Website or otherwise (such as credit card, debit card or other payment information); (iv) other information requested during the account registration process; and (v) other information requested by our service vendors in order to provide their services. If a User communicates with HFI by e-mail or otherwise, posts messages to any forums, completes online forms, surveys or entries or otherwise interacts with or uses the features on the Website, any information provided in such communications may be collected by HFI. HFI may also collect information about how Users use the Website, for example, by tracking the number of unique views received by the pages of the Website, or the domains and IP addresses from which Users originate. While not all of the information that HFI collects from Users is personally identifiable, it may be associated with personally identifiable information that Users provide HFI through the Website or otherwise. HFI may provide ways that the User can opt out of receiving certain information from HFI. If the User opts out of certain services, User information may still be collected for those services to which the User elects to subscribe. For those elected services, this Privacy Policy will apply.

How HFI Uses Information

HFI may use personally identifiable information collected through the Website for the specific purposes for which the information was collected, to process purchases and sales of products or services offered via the Website if any, to contact Users regarding products and services offered by HFI, its parent, subsidiary and other related companies in order to otherwise to enhance Users’ experience with HFI. HFI may also use information collected through the Website for research regarding the effectiveness of the Website and the business planning, marketing, advertising and sales efforts of HFI. HFI does not sell any User information under any circumstances.

Disclosure of Information

HFI may disclose personally identifiable information collected from Users to its parent, subsidiary and other related companies to use the information for the purposes outlined above, as necessary to provide the services offered by HFI and to provide the Website itself, and for the specific purposes for which the information was collected. HFI may disclose personally identifiable information at the request of law enforcement or governmental agencies or in response to subpoenas, court orders or other legal process, to establish, protect or exercise HFI’s legal or other rights or to defend against a legal claim or as otherwise required or allowed by law. HFI may disclose personally identifiable information in order to protect the rights, property or safety of a User or any other person. HFI may disclose personally identifiable information to investigate or prevent a violation by User of any contractual or other relationship with HFI or the perpetration of any illegal or harmful activity. HFI may also disclose aggregate, anonymous data based on information collected from Users to investors and potential partners. Finally, HFI may disclose or transfer personally identifiable information collected from Users in connection with or in contemplation of a sale of its assets or business or a merger, consolidation or other reorganization of its business.

Personal Information as Provided by User

If a User includes such User’s personally identifiable information as part of the User posting to the Website, such information may be made available to any parties using the Website. HFI does not edit or otherwise remove such information from User information before it is posted on the Website. If a User does not wish to have such User’s personally identifiable information made available in this manner, such User must remove any such information before posting. HFI is not liable for any damages caused or incurred due to personally identifiable information made available in the foregoing manners. For example, a User posts on an HFI-administered forum would be considered Personal Information as provided by User and subject to the terms of this section.

Security of Information

Information about Users that is maintained on HFI’s systems or those of its service providers is protected using industry standard security measures. However, no security measures are perfect or impenetrable, and HFI cannot guarantee that the information submitted to, maintained on or transmitted from its systems will be completely secure. HFI is not responsible for the circumvention of any privacy settings or security measures relating to the Website by any Users or third parties.

Correcting, Updating, Accessing or Removing Personal Information

If a User’s personally identifiable information changes, or if a User no longer desires to receive non-account specific information from HFI, HFI will endeavor to provide a way to correct, update and/or remove that User’s previously-provided personal data. This can be done by emailing a request to HFI at Additionally, you may request access to the personally identifiable information as collected by HFI by sending a request to HFI as set forth above. Please note that in certain circumstances, HFI may not be able to completely remove a User’s information from its systems. For example, HFI may retain a User’s personal information for legitimate business purposes, if it may be necessary to prevent fraud or future abuse, for account recovery purposes, if required by law or as retained in HFI’s data backup systems or cached or archived pages. All retained personally identifiable information will continue to be subject to the terms of the Privacy Policy to which the User has previously agreed.

Contacting HFI

If you have any questions or comments about this Privacy Policy, you may contact HFI via any of the following methods:
Human Factors International, Inc.
PO Box 2020
1680 highway 1, STE 3600
Fairfield IA 52556
(800) 242-4480

Terms and Conditions for Public Training Courses

Reviewed: 18 Mar 2014

Cancellation of Course by HFI

HFI reserves the right to cancel any course up to 14 (fourteen) days prior to the first day of the course. Registrants will be promptly notified and will receive a full refund or be transferred to the equivalent class of their choice within a 12-month period. HFI is not responsible for travel expenses or any costs that may be incurred as a result of cancellations.

Cancellation of Course by Participants (All regions except India)

$100 processing fee if cancelling within two weeks of course start date.

Cancellation / Transfer by Participants (India)

4 Pack + Exam registration: Rs. 10,000 per participant processing fee (to be paid by the participant) if cancelling or transferring the course (4 Pack-CUA/CXA) registration before three weeks from the course start date. No refund or carry forward of the course fees if cancelling or transferring the course registration within three weeks before the course start date.

Cancellation / Transfer by Participants (Online Courses)

$100 processing fee if cancelling within two weeks of course start date. No cancellations or refunds less than two weeks prior to the first course start date.

Individual Modules: Rs. 3,000 per participant ‘per module’ processing fee (to be paid by the participant) if cancelling or transferring the course (any Individual HFI course) registration before three weeks from the course start date. No refund or carry forward of the course fees if cancelling or transferring the course registration within three weeks before the course start date.

Exam: Rs. 3,000 per participant processing fee (to be paid by the participant) if cancelling or transferring the pre agreed CUA/CXA exam date before three weeks from the examination date. No refund or carry forward of the exam fees if requesting/cancelling or transferring the CUA/CXA exam within three weeks before the examination date.

No Recording Permitted

There will be no audio or video recording allowed in class. Students who have any disability that might affect their performance in this class are encouraged to speak with the instructor at the beginning of the class.

Course Materials Copyright

The course and training materials and all other handouts provided by HFI during the course are published, copyrighted works proprietary and owned exclusively by HFI. The course participant does not acquire title nor ownership rights in any of these materials. Further the course participant agrees not to reproduce, modify, and/or convert to electronic format (i.e., softcopy) any of the materials received from or provided by HFI. The materials provided in the class are for the sole use of the class participant. HFI does not provide the materials in electronic format to the participants in public or onsite courses.