Custom Strategy & Design Engagements

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Custom Strategy & Design Engagements

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Go beyond cranking out code.  Become an idea generator.

Does any of this sound familiar?

  • “A middleman is deciding what features belong in my product.  When he tells me to jump, I just have to ask, ‘How high?’.”

  • “We’re always reacting to customer complaints.  We put in a custom feature to satisfy one customer.  It actually makes our product worse.  Then another customer complains - louder.”

  • “What’s so special about another boutique software development agency?  There are ten, just in our building!  No wonder we have trouble keeping clients.”

  • “I wonder if I’m really about to ship an MVP that’s here today and replaced tomorrow.”

Is any of that you?  Read on...

A large global company now makes big business decisions faster

This company needed to improve their intranet application’s navigation to accommodate new features and a very wide variety of users.  After I proposed a range of simple changes, we created a navigation tree that not only allowed their users to find what they needed more successfully, but also with less trial and error.

“David was outstanding to work with. He is very well versed in the UX space, but not only on making good designs but understanding the context of who are the users, what are their needs, [and] what are the different tension points in serving different users.
“On top, he was super quick in turning around the work without compromising quality of his recommendations. I will be hiring him again especially for my projects that are more challenging to solve.”
- a manager responsible for this web application

What if we fixed this?

You would help your clients determine their real needs.  You would get away from order-taking and become your clients’ indispensable trusted partner, not a commodity.

Your products would retain users without filling your inbox with usability bugs.  With better results for your clients, you could focus on the work you love instead of chasing new work all the time.

I helped a major county government reorganize their site

Kindred Technology Group, a design and development agency, launched a redesign for DeKalb County, Georgia, in fall 2016.  The site has over 2,400 pages.  By reorganizing their content, I gave them a solid foundation for the rest of their effort.

“Top Notch!  David’s commitment and attention on this project was unparalleled.  He helped us sort through 1000’s of pages of content to create an amazing product.”
- Kenley Obas, Co-Founder & CEO, Kindred Technology Group

How do we get you there?

I let your users around the world help your dev shop create a v1 (or future release) with staying power.

My full Strategy & Design projects involve two phases, Research & Design Strategy.

  • Research lasts about 3-5 weeks.  I gather data about your audience via stakeholder interviews and either user interviews or surveys.  Then I generate personas (typically 8-10) and recommend a primary audience.

  • Design Strategy involves several iterations, usually about 3.  In each iteration, I generate ideas, sketch the ideas we select together, incorporate these ideas into a prototype, and test it with users.  Depending on your team and needs, I may also do some visual design or just check in periodically to support development and launch.

DC Trails used the Research & Design Demo to improve their reputation

Working with Sweetpea Mobile, I designed the DC Trails Hop On Hop Off Tours app, which is live in the App Store.

“I worked with David on a mobile app project for about three months. He impressed me so much with his extensive knowledge of mobile UX, his strong work ethic and his professionalism that I decided to work with him exclusively on all UX-related projects going forward.
“I've worked with many UX professionals over the span of my career, but I've never worked with anyone as talented or reliable as David. One thing that sets David apart is the fact that he has a software development background. As a software developer myself, that meant that I didn't have to explain basic things like what a server is or what an API does and we could directly dive right into the product.
“David does a great job at balancing advocating for the user and keeping business goals front and center. If you're looking for someone who can come up with a great solution that will serve both business and user needs, David is your guy. Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, David is kind and patient and fun to work with. I consider myself lucky to be able to work with him on an ongoing basis."
- Pietro Rea, founder, Sweetpea Mobile

Ready To Get The Most Out Of Your Product?


To offer Strategy & Design clients the highest possible level of service while maintaining quick turnarounds, I work actively for only one Strategy & Design client at a time.  If you’re a good fit, please contact me for availability.


While I’d like to think I can do that with anyone, not everyone is a good fit for working with me.  This service is a great fit for you if:


  1. You want us to communicate openly and honestly.

  2. You’re willing to do a research phase before beginning design.

  3. You’re willing and able to begin implementing my recommendations.

  4. You have an expensive design strategy or IA problem that requires great problem-solving.

  5. You have more money than time or expertise and can commit U.S. $30k-60k and 3-6 months for this project.


It’s not a good fit for you if:

  1. You want to start design immediately without 3-5 weeks of upfront research.

  2. You’re looking for the cheapest option.

  3. Your spec can’t change, even if our research invalidates your biggest assumption.

These projects are a big commitment.  To reduce risk, I offer a Satisfaction Guarantee.  If you decide our project is not working out or you are not satisfied with my services, I will, at your option, either waive labor fees for the Research phase or current Design Strategy iteration, or accept a portion of those fees that reflect your level of satisfaction.

Want to try before you buy?  I offer an upcoming ebook, teardowns, and Research & Design Demos.