Nottingham digital consultancy expands into London

Phil Randall (left) and Dr Sam Howard

A Nottingham consultancy which helps businesses deliver a better online user experience for their customers is expanding into London.

Userfy, founded by digital entrepreneur Phil Randall and human-computer interaction expert Dr Sam Howard, carries out research which unlocks insights into how online products and services can be improved.

Launched just over a year ago at Accelerate Places, the hub for scale-up businesses on Wollaton Street in Nottingham, the business builds on Randall’s previous experience growing North 51 into a multi-million pound digital company and Howard’s expertise researching and understanding the way people interact with online environments.

Randall said: “Too often, companies invest time and money in developing digital products only to see them under-perform.

“The common denominator in this under-performance is failing to engage properly with customers or users during the development phase, so that the solution doesn’t meet their expectations when it goes live. That results in lost sales and even more expenditure sorting the problem out.”

Userfy’s team – which also includes human-computer interaction specialists, psychologists and researchers – now works for a wide range of clients including household names in retail, financial services, telecoms, logistics and hospitality.

While Userfy is headquartered at Accelerate Places Nottingham, where it has its own user experience testing suite, a significant increase in demand from blue chip clients in London means that Howard is now based permanently in the capital – this time at Accelerate Places’ Hammersmith HQ.

“The tie-up with Accelerate has worked really well for us,” said Howard. “It has proved to be a great environment for us to start and scale-up the business in Nottingham, and when we mentioned to Accelerate that we needed a base in London they immediately offered us a solution which works for us and our clients.

“We want to be close to the organisations we work with and our base at Accelerate in London means we can now grow our presence in the capital in an environment which reflects their expectations.”

Randall added: “Userfy is now beginning to build real momentum because there is an increasing realisation that user experience testing is critically important to success online. Besides launching in London we’ve been recruiting more people to join us in the business.”

Mark Sanders, CEO of Accelerate Places, said: “We launched Accelerate Places in Nottingham precisely because we knew there was a need for the kind of shared workspace which removes hassle and enables businesses to focus on growth. That’s a central part of Blenheim Chalcot’s mission.

“We’re delighted to be able to support Userfy’s growth in both Nottingham and London, just as we are supporting businesses in London which need a cost-effective base here in the East Midlands.”