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“Andy is a very strong communicator with expert knowledge and background”

World Health Organization

At a Glance

I helped the World Health Organization assess and develop an improvement roadmap for the Knowledge Action Portal (KAP), a community-driven communication and collaboration web application focused on the prevention of non-communicable diseases. Now, the KAP team has a clear path forward for making high-impact usability, accessibility, and performance improvements.

World Health Organization logo

What I Did

  • Best practices usability review
  • Accessibility audit
  • Performance evaluation
  • Messaging & design language review
  • Findings synthesis & prioritized recommendations roadmap

Project Goal

Deliver the “unvarnished truth” about web app usability

In 2018, the World Health Organization launched a community-driven communication and collaboration platform called The Knowledge Action Portal (KAP). The goal of the KAP is to connect and engage WHO Member States, UN Agencies, and non-State actors working on the prevention of non-communicable diseases like diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Because the KAP was assembled piecemeal over the course of two years, however, it behaved more like a collection of parts than a coherent, purposeful system. This makes the KAP laborious and difficult to use.

Screen capture of the World Health Organization Knowledge Action Portal, prior to implementing recommendations
The WHO Knowledge Action Portal, prior to implementing recommendations

Project Approach

Evaluate and synthesize for a 360° view

Because the KAP’s usability, accessibility, and performance issues are all interrelated—and are all interconnected pieces of why the system as a whole is hard to use—it was necessary to examine each aspect of the site in detail, then synthesize all of those details into a comprehensive, actionable whole.

To accomplish this, the project included a series of clearly defined and results-oriented activities, including:

  • Review existing research and interview key stakeholders to ensure that subsequent evaluations aligned with WHO and KAP user goals, and took into account known issues and ongoing work.
  • Assess the overall user experience of the KAP using a multifaceted assessment focused on usability, accessibility, performance, and messaging and design language.
  • Identify high impact accessibility issues that are preventing users with visual, motor, or neurological disabilities from accessing KAP resources
  • Identify web performance and infrastructure issues that are preventing those with low bandwidth or processor resources from using the KAP effectively
  • Deliver a frank account of the “unvarnished truth” about the KAP website, supported with the evidence, industry practices, and examples that will allow the KAP team to understand, communicate, and act on these findings
  • Deliver a prioritized set of recommendations that provides KAP designers and developers with an actionable roadmap for rolling out high impact improvements to the site

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