Website Usability Expert

Location : Home based, no travel required, SLOVAK REPUBLIC
Application Deadline :18-Oct-12 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Expected Duration of Assignment :Approximately 6 weeks (tentatively 29 October to 7 December, 2012)

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


The Bratislava Regional Centre offers technical and advisory support to 25+ UNDP offices in the region of Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
The Centre’s Knowledge and Innovation team is exploring the use of online communications and social media as a way to increase the effectiveness of programming, opening up the organization to external views and input and engaging UNDP experts in the regional and global dialogue on key development challenges. The Centre is also exploring opportunities to develop partnerships with other organizations in areas such as content syndication, innovative use of social media in project design and delivery and online information dissemination.
Our website:
In May of this year (2012) UNDP launched a new website for Europe and Central Asia, adopting a new global design, and updating and rewriting content, optimizing it for the web, and making sure it meets our strategic goals. Improving our content is an ongoing process.
We would like our website to respond to user needs, and have already made several changes to the site based on user feedback.
We are now planning to further enhance the usability of our site in line with industry best practice and are therefore seeking the help of a usability specialist.

Duties and Responsibilities

We are looking for someone to help us design and carry out usability testing for our website , taking into consideration not only traditional usability principles, but also principles of social design. This will include:

  • Usability testing, giving a small set of users a list of tasks, and collecting their feedback and tracking their reactions, in order to learn how to improve our website, and make it more user friendly. Among other things, testing should include a review of the website architecture from a usability perspective.
  • We expect the consultant to propose a methodology for how to best carry out the testing. As we are using a similar design, and have similar content to other UNDP offices, what we learn could be potentially valuable for other UNDP web teams. The specialist/company will be responsible for finding, managing and paying users.
  • In collaboration with the web team, the consultant will design the usability testing in a way so that it can be easily replicated. This includes a full documentation of steps, and content (tasks, questions etc.), and suggested possible steps for further testing, which we want to carry out regularly, in-house, after receiving support and resources throughout the first testing. Because the review is partly intended to prepare the web team to be able to do further testing without external assistance, one of more members of the web team should be included in the various stages of the review, in particular with some of the testing, which may include briefing and debriefing.
  • A presentation for the team on the methodology, its rationale, and findings, as well as a set of resources - examples, cases studies, book and article recommendations (and links) to learn more about usability principles and testing, especially those most relevant to our type of website users and goals.
  • A final report outlining:
  • Specific usability problems on our website; recommended changes that will improve usability; analysis of how well our website communicates and supports users’ top goals; and future usability and social design directions for the site.
  • Recommendations for possible site structure.


The expert should be able to:

  • Specify how human-centred activities fit into the system development process
  • Establish the requirements of the user organisation and other interested parties for the system; taking full account of the needs, competencies and working environment of each relevant stakeholder in the system
  • Identify, clarify and record context of use in which the system will operate
  • Create potential design solutions by drawing on established state-of-the-art practice, the experience and knowledge of the participants and the results of the context of use analysis
  • Collect feedback on the developing design
  • Incorporate social design principles web development process / usability testing
  • Assess social usability of a technology: how easy social interactions are to make
  • Develop and evaluate websites and other online products and services
  • Utilize research-based web design and usability guidelines
  • Develop comprehensive usability testing plans, and comprehensive, practical usability testing reports
  • Carry out diagnostic analysis of findings from usability testing
  • Set and attain usability performance metrics
  • Work effectively with clients and others not familiar with usability engineering, and ability to explain specialized information in plain language
  • Write and edit usability publications, plans, and reports

Required Skills and Experience

Academic Qualifications/Education:

  • Secondary school education completed
  • Academic training in related subjects are an asset, but not necessarily required


  • Three years minimum of experience with usability testing

Language skills:

  • Excellent writing, editing, and oral communication skills in English

Evaluation of Applicants
Applicants will be screened against qualifications and the competencies specified above. Individual consultants will be evaluated based on a cumulative analysis taking into consideration the combination of the applicants’ qualifications and financial proposal.

The award of the contract should be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:

  • a) responsive/compliant/acceptable, and
  • b) Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical (P11 desk reviews and interviews) and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.

Only highest ranked candidates who would be found qualified for the job based on the P11 desk review will be invited for an interview.

Technical Criteria - 70% of total evaluation – max. 35 points:

  • Proposed methodology is clearly described, and responds to the needs outlined in the description of responsibilities (we are actively inviting suggestions how to meet these needs) – max points: 10
  • Previous experience designing and carrying out usability testing – max points: 10
  • Experience incorporating social design principles into usability testing  – max points: 5
  • Mentoring / coaching / teaching experience – max points: 5
  • Ability to communicate the methodology, as well as expertise and approach to usability - through an interview – max points 5

Financial Criteria - 30% of total evaluation – max. 15 points

Application procedures

  • Qualified candidates are requested to apply online via this website. The application should contain:
    Cover letter stating your interest in and qualifications for the advertised position, including a fully outlined methodology for both testing and collaboration with the team, including a proposed calendar of activities. Please paste the letter into the "Resume and Motivation" section of the electronic application. (You can also pdf it along with your P11 form)
  • Filled P11 form (blank form can be downloaded from; please upload the P11 instead of your CV
  • Financial Proposal* - specifying a total lump sum amount for the tasks specified in this announcement. The financial proposal shall include a breakdown of this lump sum amount (number of anticipated working days, any other possible costs)
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please make sure you have provided all requested materials

*Please note that the financial proposal is all-inclusive and shall take into account various expenses incurred by the consultant/contractor during the contract period. 

Payments will be made only upon confirmation of UNDP on delivering on the contract obligations in a satisfactory manner.
Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director. Consultants are also required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under
General Terms and conditions as well as other related documents can be found under:
Qualified women and members of minorities are encouraged to apply.

Due to large number of applications we receive, we are able to inform only the successful candidates about the outcome or status of the selection process.

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