Is the Certified Usability Analyst title acknowledged by employeers?

20 Jun 2010 - 1:22am
4 years ago
4 replies
1849 reads
aZippel4iD
2010
I am trying to get a sense about the employers viewpoint of the HFI-Certified Usability Analyst. I have been a web designer for 15 years, I am working on my B.S. in psychology. Generally speaking, does the company you work for view this certification as making a difference as an educational requirement for someone at my level (or lack there of;)? I’m trying to come up with an R.O.I. – thank you very much for your comments.

Comments

20 Jun 2010 - 6:05am
Michael Rawlins
2009

In my opinion, the HFI certification is well packaged - and priced well for funding stakeholders to agree to support.
The certification has served me well in my career. However, from a value standpoint (and personal branding) - I do combine the certification with other training and experiences I have had to position nad sell myself it to my employer(s). Notice the attachments illustrate some interesting (unscientific) data that can lead one to believe it's a reasonable investment (of time, money, and personal brand...).

From an ROI standpoint - having multiple CUA's within an organization ensures common language, approach and can lead to a quickly accepted governance model. If used as a vehicle to unite business communities with IT. For example, my current organization now has 15 CUA's - which has helped raise the awareness and imperative of UCD quickly and effectively. Dollar for dollar - this was a wise investment - and we have many success stories as a result. 

Pros:
Reasonable cost to gain funding and senior level support. Comprehensive view of user centered design method. Good reference manuals and community of CUA's (over 2,500) to share ideas and challenges.

Cons:
Not enough hands on in classes (need lab time, more clock time for application to projects). Research material not updated enough - and this is the most important class (Research to Practice class).
HFI Exam takes hits in the industry for not being difficult enough. Also, because there is a no re-certification mandate after 3 or 5 years - there are people in the industry that do not consider it a true certification.

Hope this helps.

On Sun, Jun 20, 2010 at 3:43 AM, aZippel4iD <art@artzippel.com> wrote:

I am trying to get a sense about the employers viewpoint of the HFI-Certified Usability Analyst. I have been a web designer for 15 years, I am working on my B.S. in psychology. Generally speaking, does the company you work for view this certification as making a difference as an educational requirement for someone at my level (or lack there of;)? I’m trying to come up with an R.O.I. – thank you very much for your comments.

(((Pl
21 Jun 2010 - 8:05pm
aZippel4iD
2010

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Michael,

 

Thank you for your input. I agree that it would most likely carry some value. My suspicion is that probably the less formal education an individual has the more difference it could make and the more formal education the less difference it could make. Since my B.S. is a year away from being completed, this might have some immediate value for me.

 

I wonder also if it might be perceived as having more value from companies that have less experience in UX to gauge its short comings.

 

You are the only individual who has responded so far, so your input is very, very much appreciated.

 

Regards,

 

Art

 

 

 

Cell: 1.714.357.7578

Email: Art@ArtZippel.com

Website: www.ArtZippel.com

 

Web Visual Designer  |  User Interaction and Experience Designer  | Wire Frame Developer

 

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: ixdaor@host.ixda.org [mailto:ixdaor@host.ixda.org] On Behalf Of Michael Rawlins
Sent: Sunday, June 20, 2010 5:06 AM
To: art@artzippel.com
Subject: Re: [IxDA] Is the Certified Usability Analyst title acknowledged by employeers?

 

In my opinion, the HFI certification is well packaged - and priced well for 

funding stakeholders to agree to support.

The certification has served me well in my career. However, from a value 

standpoint (and personal branding) - I do combine the certification with 

other training and experiences I have had to position nad sell myself it to 

my employer(s). Notice the attachments illustrate some interesting 

(unscientific) data that can lead one to believe it's a reasonable investment 

(of time, money, and personal brand...).

 

 From an ROI standpoint - having multiple CUA's within an organization ensures 

common language, approach and can lead to a quickly accepted governance 

model. If used as a vehicle to unite business communities with IT. For 

example, my current organization now has 15 CUA's - which has helped raise 

the awareness and imperative of UCD quickly and effectively. Dollar for 

dollar - this was a wise investment - and we have many success stories as a 

result.

 

Pros:

Reasonable cost to gain funding and senior level support. Comprehensive view 

of user centered design method. Good reference manuals and community of CUA's 

(over 2,500) to share ideas and challenges.

 

Cons:

Not enough hands on in classes (need lab time, more clock time for 

application to projects). Research material not updated enough - and this is 

the most important class (Research to Practice class).

HFI Exam takes hits in the industry for not being difficult enough. Also, 

because there is a no re-certification mandate after 3 or 5 years - there are 

people in the industry that do not consider it a true certification.

 

Hope this helps.

 

On Sun, Jun 20, 2010 at 3:43 AM, aZippel4iD <art@artzippel.com [1]> wrote:

 

>I am trying to get a sense about the employers viewpoint of the 

>HFI-Certified Usability Analyst. I have been a web designer for 15 years, I 

>am working on my B.S. in psychology. Generally speaking, does the company 

>you work for view this certification as making a difference as an 

>educational requirement for someone at my level (or lack there of;)? Im 

>trying to come up with an R.O.I.  thank you very much for your comments.

>(((Pl

(((Please leave all content

23 Jun 2010 - 11:06am
bkillam
2010

I'd be careful here. The CUA, despite its name, is a certificate of completion - it is not professional certification. As a result, claiming professional certification based on this in a job application can backfire, though many companies do not check.

Bill
---------------------------------------------------
Bill Killam, MA CHFP
President, User-Centered Design, Inc.
20548 Deerwatch Place
Ashburn, VA 20147
703-729-0998 (Office)
703-626-6318 (Mobile)
http://www.user-centereddesign.com

23 Jun 2010 - 9:21am
dgavales
2010

My organization instituted CUA in order to increase usability skills among non-human factors engineers. I haven't  seen the practical result of what people can do after training, but it has helped (as discussed) highlight the importance and complexity of this work organizationally, and it's seen as foundation-level training in the department.

There were some issues at first in ensuring that CUA isn't *overvalued*, compared to more extensive training such as a masters degree. It's been a process of education, but now we have 2 tiers of folks: the experts and the folks with CUA-level competency. That said, if we were hiring for systems engineers, management would be glad if an applicant had CUA. It would be less important (not adequate) for a human factors engineer.

Diana

 

Diana Gavales

Human Factors Design Engineer

St. Jude Medical Cardiac Rhythm Management

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