At the heart of your success is digital expertise that cares.

CoLab is a worker-owned digital agency that started in 2010 in Ithaca, New York. CoLab designs and develops technology for mission driven organizations and entrepreneurs, including Seventh Generation, Cornell University, and the Unitarian Universalist Association. CoLab has team members in Ithaca, New York City, Austin, Oakland, Montreal, Toronto, Taipei, Izola, Jakarta, and Chandigarh. The diversity of the members’ backgrounds and geographies makes CoLab agile and uniquely empathetic. CoLab’s mission is to contribute to a new economy of justice and cooperation while bringing clients beautiful, cutting-edge technology.

about-colab

Our process

As we get things rolling for your company, we take the time to get to know you first. We'll cover everything from your business goals to alignment with your brand, to the goals and needs of your customers, and finally, explore the technical landscape. From there we can sketch out a high level road map to get us all on the same page. As our name suggests, collaboration is the key to our success — and that obviously begins with you.

Discovery / Assessment

  • Business Analysis
  • Brand Alignment
  • User/Customer Goals & Needs
  • Content Strategy
  • Technology Requirements
  • Social Engagement
  • Digital Strategy & Road Map

Design

  • Collaborative Workshops
  • Rapid Prototyping
  • Content Creation
  • Information Architecture
  • Wireframing
  • User Interface Design/MVP
  • Usability Testing of UI

Product Development

  • Lean and Agile Methodologies
  • Drupal Development
  • NodeJS and JavaScript MVCs
  • Native and Hybrid Mobile Apps
  • Web Apps
  • Problem-Solving
  • Data Migrations
  • Systems Integrations
  • Usability Testing in Agile Cycles

Measuring Success

  • CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization)
  • SEO/SEM
  • User Engagement
  • ROI Modeling
  • Data Dashboards / Visualization
  • Social Listening
  • Optimizely

Rationale

The process above outlines the workflow that traditional UX and Lean UX operate inside, indicating the common ground for most product cycle engagement for any type of clients. At the start we are always in the Discovery phase, assessing what their needs are, as we try to bring them on board. Once they are on board, the process laid out above indicates how we can work through these various phases. This is not rigid nor fixed, as some projects require other touch points of discovery.

Phase 1 - Discovery & Assessment

Our end goal here is to take this time to do our preliminary discovery research that will ultimately produce a high-level road map that the clients sign off on. This gets us all on the same page, ready to move through the project. It also gives us all adequate time to make sure that all the moving parts are on the table. Without that preparation, it's too easy to overlook things that can come back to throw us off track later on.

Phase 2 - Design

Traditional design workflow follows in this fashion. Collaborative workshops typically follow the Discovery phase, affording us the opportunity to learn from and work with the SMEs on the clients' side. Though the MVP approach indicates the potential to work in a more lean fashion, we shouldn't consider this to apply to all projects, allowing for variation in preferred scope.

Phase 3 - Product Development

This phase is meant to define our forward movement during the development and implementation cycles, be they Agile or otherwise. Working with our teams and the dev teams of the clients, we can tweak the steps required to ensure that the best workflow process evolves, adhering to the typical tracking tools and user validation analysis.

Phase 4 - Success Metrics

This is pretty simple — without success metrics, you can't accurately track the data points needed to measure the various dimensions required to keep your business on track. Ideally, we can roll this information up into a data dashboard, enabling our clients to more quickly review the information, and therefore, more quickly respond.