Hey, we're the user experience team at Opower.
Our design challenge: to motivate everyone, everywhere, to use less energy. In other words, we design like the world depends on it.
How?
Most people don’t think much about their energy consumption.
We apply user-centered design to energy data to transform it into products that are clear, intuitive, and compelling.
Does it work?
We’re fundamentally changing people’s relationship with energy.
In fact, our users have saved enough energy to replace the Hoover Dam.
Meet the team

Team

We may come from different places and ride different bikes, but we're joined by our love of good design.

  • Deena
    Deena
    Chief Vegetable Evangelist
    Deena
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Jon
    Jon
    Wireframe Detective
    Jon
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Jim
    Jim
    Safety Challenger
    Jim
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Kate
    Kate
    Professional Raiser of One Eyebrow
    Kate
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Suelyn
    Suelyn
    Dinner party host in training
    Suelyn
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Justin
    Justin
    Coiner of the term “Desdev”
    Justin
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Sheena
    Sheena
    Crafter-in-residence
    Sheena
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Ben
    Ben
    Senior Tea House Correspondent
    Ben
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Eunice
    Eunice
    Style Coordinator
    Eunice
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Marina
    Marina
    Spelling Enthusiast
    Marina
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Ryan
    Ryan
    Whiteboard Penmanship Expert
    Ryan
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Aaron
    Aaron
    Director of Rowdiness
    Aaron
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Adrienne
    Adrienne
    Guidance Counselor
    Adrienne
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • Rosie
    Rosie
    Art Director
    Rosie
    Energy use
    UX team average
  • You?
    Yeah, you.
    We’re always on the lookout for talented designers with a passion for behavior change. We have internship opportunities too! Check out our open jobs or just say hello.

Our Thoughts and Contributions

We like to write and speak about design, code, and behavior change. Here’s some of the latest.

Deena at TEDx

Don't change the products, change the people Watch the video

The Behavioral Science of Limiting User Behavior

Dave and Ryan write for UX Magazine Read the article

The Web is inefficient, but we can fix it

Justin on energy, design, and the Internet Read the article

Looking for some leadership?

We love contributing to the design and sustainability communities. We’re available to lead workshops, give talks, and write articles… just drop us a line and let us know what you’re looking for.

Design principles

Opower is not like other software companies. Our goal is to drive measurable energy savings, so we stick to 5 behavioral design principles for delighting and informing energy consumers.

  • No 1
    Design for how people actually behave
    At Opower, our focus is different than most product companies: we strive to influence people's daily actions outside of our product. To do this, we’ve become experts in the science of behavior change. We incorporate behavioral science techniques such as normative comparison, social proof, loss language, defaults, and user commitment into our product designs.

    Energy reports show smiley faces when people use less energy than their neighbors.

    Thermostat app alerts people of the money they are losing by changing their settings.

    Leaderboard campaigns give users an achievable goal to hit.

  • No 2
    Assume people don't care
    We must accept the burden of relevance — “boring until proven otherwise.” Studies show that people only spend 9 minutes per year thinking about their energy use, so we're starting at a disadvantage. We respect people's limited time, so we use familiar mental models, clear language, and visual cues to help people quickly process our messages.

    Mobile energy use chart shows the user their percentage change compared to neighbors.

    A home energy disaggregation shows what uses most.

    The correlation of weather and energy usage is a valuable insight.

  • No 3
    Always lead to action
    To achieve measurable energy savings, people must change their behavior. We take the time to understand our users so that our savings tips are actionable and can integrate into their lives. Users should always have a clear next step to take.

    A tip to help people save during peak hours.

    A door hanger reminds people to save when they’d often forget to.

    Energy-saving tips are targeted for specific homes.

  • No 4
    Aim for lasting relationships, not one-night stands
    People receive Opower reports and products from their utility company. It is important to respect that relationship, and help improve it over time. As we learn more about people while they use our products, we adapt to their circumstances by providing appropriate encouragement and rewards.

    The thermostat app asks users for feedback after a period of time.

    To ensure an accurate comparison to similar homes, we let users update their home profile.

    Users can update their usage pie chart if they change something at home.

  • No 5
    Build for everyone... who receives a utility bill
    At Opower, we strive to find the right message and deliver it through the appropriate channel to make sure everyone, everywhere, has the information they need to be energy efficient regardless of their age, income, language, energy knowledge, or access to technology.

    Paper reports offer people a simple way to understand their energy use.

    Green button integration allows users to export their personal energy data.

    Peak-time alerts can be delivered by e-mail, text, or paper mail.

Of course we have fun

And we have the pictures to prove it.

Sometimes we skip work.
(to catch some waves)
Some days we dress up.
(and channel our inner Don Draper)
We explore California together.
(preferably not during dinosaur season)
And we share a love of good television.
(Frank Underwood would approve)

Get in touch

We love meeting new people.

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Thanks for dropping us a line! Someone on the team will follow up soon. While you’re waiting, check out Deena’s TEDx talk. You can also tweet at us!