Basic Incorporation

Screen where user chooses the Basic Incorporation option

Entrepreneurs create small businesses all the time. Corporations Canada offers an online form to file articles of incorporation.


Novice users were not completing the multipage online form when filing their articles of incorporation.


With human-centric design methods, I created a simple, accessible, easy to read online service to improve user’s comprehension and increase their confidence to succeed at incorporating a business in Canada.


Duration: 6 months of iterative R&D sprints.

Team: 2 Directors, 3 Managers, 2 Officers, 2 Business Analysts, 2 Writers, 1 Legal Articles Examiner, 1 Frontend Developer, 2 Backend Developers, 1 Quality Assurance Specialist, and 1 UX Designer (me).

I used Axure RP to create functional high-fidelity prototypes for usability testing.

Screen where user chooses the Basic Incorporation option

Research insights

As many as 90% of novice users would disengage before completing the task.

97.9% of employers in Canada are small businesses representing 68.8% of the total private labour force.
Personas improved empathy

I used Corporations Canada’s personas to tell stories that helped our team empathize with users and describe the task flows in a meaningful way.


My role in the project was to lead user-centric design efforts and conduct usability research.

  • I facilitated workshops to determine requirements (user criteria, personas, task flows, sketching).
  • Moderated in-person testing to record key indicators (errors, comments, time to completion, …).
  • Tested usability and accessibility with high-fidelity prototypes made in Axure RP.

Deliverables included PowerPoint presentations, diagrams, reports and prototypes.

  • I presented data collected (task completion, pathways taken, user satisfaction) with heuristics, severity of findings, and recommendations affecting user flow, content, and UI elements.

Results from the Keystroke Level Model study showed significant improvements.

Keystroke Level Model analysis results showed significant improvement
diagram showing user inputs

I worked with the team to determine precise task flows required to optimize business requirements and user needs.


We used 2 personas: Our goal was to help “Joe” the Business Owner (novice user unfamiliar with the task flow) with insights from “Norman” the Intermediary (paralegal user familiar with the task flow).

We reduced cognitive load by prototyping designs using fewer options per screen, applying familiar design patterns and improving readability. User study participants expressed their satisfaction in terms of comprehension and confidence which prompted us to include icons for help text popups.

I wanted to get a better idea of how much work (reading, thinking, pointing, clicking, typing) the user needed to do for each step in the task flow, so I measured the prototypes for task time with a Keystroke-Level Model study and compared with user observations.

  • We found appropriate inputs for the auto-fill feature using feedback from “Joe” and “Norman”.
  • We reduced the number of steps in the form using participant’s insights.
  • And improved visual hierarchy and readability for accessibility.

I created reports and prepared presentations with MS Word and PowerPoint.


Our team delivered a multipage online form so that new Canadian entrepreneurs, having limited experience with legal terms, can quickly and easily go online to file articles of incorporation.

  • User pain-points revealed solutions to improve task flow with meaningful groupings.
  • Clickable icons allowed the user to decide when they need more information.
  • The number of transactional pages was reduced by as much as 1/3rd, with nearly 50% fewer words to read, and up to 20% fewer clicks to complete the task.

I was privileged to oversee UX design for Corporations Canada’s support to businesses in Canada, creating new services for economic growth while delighting Canadians with timely, innovative and client-oriented online services to federal corporations.

Screenshots of the Online Filing Center.