At a party the other night, I met a software developer who happened to be looking for a usability consultant to evaluate his startup's web-based application. This is the first time that's happened to me! I believe it's a sign the usability field continues to mature and gain legitimacy, although that may be confirmation bias.
Anyway, he believed the application needed improvement, but he was very wary about asking for help. He'd commissioned heuristic analysis with usability consultants in the past but their "Word documents with mockups," (said disparagingly) were not what he was looking for. I didn't understand at first because what he described sounded like a very typical usability report.
After a long discussion, we clarified the problem with the reports. Because he and his development team only can think about usability intermittently, the reports tended to sit around awhile before they were ready to refer back to them. And without lots of extra context, it simply took too long to decipher context and meaning. It seemed like a classic cognitive overload moment.
Do you have a standard report template you use successfully? And have you ever needed to come up with something more involved to meet client needs?