When you need usable, effective, efficient and satisfying products or services – that's when we'd like to hear from you. That's our core competency, and it has underlies our broad range of strategic evaluation and design services for private, public and non-profit sectors. Our specialization is the user experience – specifically applying user- and usage-centred techniques for requirements analysis, design, and evaluation.
About Neo Insight
Neo Insight Inc. has been doing business since July 2001, and incorporated in March 2002. Individually we have more than 20 years of experience in the design and evaluation of user experiences. Our approach to usability testing is based not only on industry-standard principles, but also on our clients' business goals and capabilities, and an in-depth understanding of users, their goals and tasks. This ensures that our recommendations and designs are prioritized to our customers' needs and their ability to implement the solutions cost-effectively.
Our participatory and iterative approach ensures a large degree of knowledge transfer. We encourage all stakeholders to actively participate in our usability testing as observers to obtain maximum value. In addition to applying usability techniques, we teach them regularly, in our own workshops and at conferences and other events. Our workshops focus on providing a “hands-on” experience of usability testing, customized to the specific needs of our customer or audience, and immersing participants in the experience of an actual usability test.
Neo Insight is partnered internationally with Customer Carewords (owned by Gerry McGovern) and provides Customer Carewords techniques and services as the sole supplier in Canada.
Neo Insight has served clients in the public sector at federal, provincial, regional, and municipal levels. We have served a broad variety of clients in higher education, high technology, non-profit, and professional services. Since much of our work uses remote technologies, we work with clients from a variety of places, and conduct usability testing with our clients' clients from anywhere they have high speed internet. We have worked with clients in a variety of countries, in a variety of languages.
Our resources are specialists in user experience and usability. Our rigorous and cost-effective approach is based on many years of observing actual behaviour. We bring multiple disciplines to bear on our projects, and bring experience with leading-edge tools and techniques, based on serving many different types of clients. Below is some information about our senior people.
Mike has 10 years experience in retail point-of-sale and financial systems, and a further 15 years in telecommunications product and service design and design management. He built the first Interaction Design team in BT, prototyped their first multi-media applications (interactive TV and airline seat-back systems), and directed a corporate usability program. He delivered BT's new brand identity on-screen, produced Corporate 'Look and Feel' Standards, and implemented user-centered design process changes for the Consumer Products division. Since co-founding Neo Insight in 2002, Mike has led many user experience projects for government and high-tech clients.
Mike has an Honours degree in Psychology and an MSc in Computer Science. He has published and presented on Human Factors techniques at international conferences, run workshops as part of the UK Government's 'Usability Now!' initiative, and chaired CapCHI - Ottawa's Computer-Human Interaction professional chapter.
Email address: mike at neoinsight dot com
Roy Ballantine has been a leader in User Experience Architecture, Design, Evaluation & Testing for more than 25 years, at Nortel; Cognos; and IBM, designing products such as web applications, office telephone solutions, and complex Statutory Financial Reporting tools. He has taught several university courses and given individual lectures and symposia on aspects of User Interface Design and Evaluation. Roy holds a PhD in Cognitive Psychology, specializing in Visual Information Processing. He joined the Neo Insight team in September of 2013 to focus on effective and efficient methods of design evaluation and feedback.
Roy’s skills include finding usable and implementable solutions to complex UX problems in an Agile development environment; concept creation and envisioning; product and feature architecture and design; prototyping (static and functional prototypes) ; web app and desktop tool design; user needs analysis; interaction design and user experience evaluation. Roy holds two patents in design, with a third pending.
Email address: roy at neoinsight dot com
Lisa Fast has tested almost 1,000 usability participants in her strategy and research work at Neo Insight. Those hours of watching people on the web, and a background in behavioural psychology, have given her a powerful sense of what it takes to create a successful User Experience. Lisa has worked in the User Experience (UX) field for over 25 years, starting out at Nortel's Design Interpretive group, and as research coordinator at Carleton’s Centre for Applied Cognitive Research. Back before UX was a thing, she completed a Masters degree in Computer Science in the psychology of programming.
Lisa holds two patents and her design publications are listed on interaction-design.org. She has been an active GitHub collaborator on the Government of Canada’s Web Experience Toolkit (WET) since 2011. Lisa speaks at conferences several times a year, most recently at the UX Professionals Association (UXPA) conference in Seattle in June 2016.
Email address: lisa at neoinsight dot com
Gordon Hopkins has been designing user experiences for over 20 years. His extensive user-centered design expertise has generated innovative designs for advanced business and residential telephones, wireless and cellular phones, remote collaboration services, telemedicine equipment, call centers, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, broadband web applications and web portals. Industry sector experience spans telecom, medicine, education, enterprise, and retail. His skills include task analysis, interaction design, heuristic analysis, rapid prototyping/simulation, usability testing, and design management.
Gord holds a PhD in Cognitive Psychology and has held positions in User Experience Architecture and Design Management at Nortel Networks and Communications Research Center. He established a "Center of Excellence" in interaction design at Nortel Networks, creating an ISO 9000 certified process.
Email address: gord at neoinsight dot com
Scott Smith is a co-founder of Neo Insight. He brings three decades of experience at the intersection of what users really need vis-a-vis how products and services meet user needs. His experience includes business analysis, qualitative research methods, product management, market analysis, and competitive strategy. Before Neo Insight he was with Nortel in the U.S. and Canada, and in telecommunications marketing.
He has conducted many workshops, user testing events, and discussion groups, managed portfolios of hardware, software, and services, built channels to market, and presented to thousands of customers. He has innovated competitive intelligence techniques, written strategic plans, managed intellectual property, managed user-centred design, and established trend-monitoring forums.
He has two patents and four pending, in the areas of video consultation (US 5,990,932), multi-service touch-screen zone-based user interface (US 6,313,853), collaborative network planning, and personalization. His research has been published in Nortel's corporate magazine. His undergraduate B.A. honours degree is in Business, Economics, and Philosophy. His M.B.A. degree program included Operations Management, Advertising, and Public Policy at the University of Minnesota Graduate School of Management.
Email address: scott at neoinsight dot com