Making Life Better: A Meaningful Mantra from International Business Awards Websites/Apps Judging Committee Chair

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, May 05, 2016 @ 10:12 AM

Simon Hardy, Vice President Brand Experience at FCV Interactive in Vancouver, Canada, has been named as the Chair of the Website & Apps Judging Committee of The 2016 (13th Annual) International Business Awards. FCV won a Gold Stevie Award in the Website Categories of The 2015 International Business Awards for their redesign of the Calgary Transit website.

The 2016 International Business Awards will be accepting entries through June 15, but enter by May 11 to avoid a late entry fee. REVIEW THE ENTRY KIT HERE.

1605FCV.jpgWe asked Simon about being named Chair, what winning the Gold Stevie Award in 2015 had meant to FCV, and what new developments he thought would most affect how companies do business in the future.

On being named Chair of The 2016 International Business Awards Judging Committee for the Website & App Awards categories, Simon observed: This is a great honor, not only for me, but also for FCV. As we expand across Canada and into the US, it’s really exciting to be a part of The International Business Awards, recognizing work that has genuinely made a difference to an organization or an industry, and–most importantly–resulted in a better user experience.”

A Fantastic Validation
Representatives of FCV attended the 2015 International Business Awards in Toronto last October. On winning the Stevie Award for Best Website in the Transportation category, Simon commented: We’re very proud of the Gold Stevie Award we won for our work with Calgary Transit. It was fantastic validation for a site that has transformed the digital experience for one of Canada’s most complex public transportation networks. But as a user-focused transformation agency, it also shone a spotlight on the wider range of work we’re doing in public transportation, travel and tourism, and digital government services across North America.”

Calgary Transit provides over 100 million trips every year to riders across the Canadian city. Its website had been out of date, difficult to use, and lacking in the important features that customers expect: mobile compatibility, accessibility, real-time updates, and trip planning. Calgary Transit approached FCV to design a responsive, customer-focused, future-proof website that would serve the connected riders’ every need.

Information at the Users’ Fingertips
FCV successfully delivered a mobile-friendly, customer-centric, scalable website that streamlined user tasks and integrated all transit services into one site. Features included: WCAG 2.0 (AA) accessibility, real-time service updates, improved information architecture, and responsive design.

FCV Interactive’s award-winning website for Calgary Transit launched in 2014 and transformed how riders obtained transit information. They can now access a responsively designed website via phone, tablet, and desktop. Real-time transit information is now at the fingertips of almost 20,000 daily mobile transit users.

The Future of Web Development

As an expert in this field, we asked Simon for his thoughts on what new developments in social media and web development businesses should be looking out for.

“The last year has seen a wide adoption of tools like Sketch and InVision, helping our teams to rapidly prototype, test, and iterate.” he told us. “For private and public sector organizations, this agile approach means we can transform user and brand experiences into something more powerful and meaningful much faster.”

Looking into the future, Simon added: “As more and more clients see the power of truly serving their users’ needs in order to meet business goals, I think we’re going to see some really exciting and unexpected solutions.”

Improving Digital Services

According to Simon, his job has changed over the years, but for the better. My job used to be all about persuading people to do things,” he explained. “But over the last 10 years, as we’ve all become more and more empowered, it’s evolved into helping people to do things. Working to constantly improve private and public sector digital services with faster access to more relevant data is incredibly exciting.”

In short, Simon told us: “At FCV, the goal that motivates us across every project is always the same: to create a user-focused experience that makes life better.”

About Simon Hardy:
Simon Hardy is Vice President Brand Experience at FCV Interactive. He leads FCV’s Design, Brand, and Content teams, creating solutions that engage customers and deliver results.

Simon is an award-winning creative director, designer, and copywriter with international experience across digital, print, and TV for brands including Starbucks, Nike, lululemon athletica, and EA Sports.  He also serves on the Digital Design Advisory Board at Vancouver Film School.

About FCV Interactive:
FCV Interactive is a user-focused transformation agency. Every day, FCV redesigns organizations and creates digital services that people love. With over a decade of expertise working with public and private sector clients, FCV delivers experiences that make life better. To learn more, visit

Topics: judging, app awards, website awards, International business awards, web awards, judges