Build a service that's simple to use so that people can succeed first time. Test it with users to make sure it works for them.

Why it's important

People expect services to work. They need things to be easy when they are trying to complete a task or find information. As a public sector organisation we have a legal duty to consider everyone's needs when designing and delivering services.

How to meet this standard in every phase

You'll be assessed on what you've done to meet this standard at service assessments. However, even if the service you are working on is not being assessed, it's good practice to consider how you'll meet this standard point.

In discovery

Things to consider:

Things to avoid in discovery

  • designing solutions without understanding user needs

In alpha

Things to consider:

Things to avoid in alpha

  • dead ends in the journey or a disconnect between online and offline actions
  • where the service starts and ends not being clear
  • the service not achieving the users' goal

In beta and live

Things to consider:

  • how data has been used to understand service performance and a plan for how you'll use this in live
  • evidence of continuous improvement to make changes to the user journey or content
  • continual monitoring of feedback and testing usability
  • evidence of usability testing, including users with the lowest level of digital skills
  • how the service meets accessibility requirements
  • user research to understand any performance issues

Things to avoid in beta and live

  • not having a plan to continually improve the service
  • not understanding how user needs might change over time

Profession specific guidance

Each DDaT profession in DfE has their own community and guidance.

User Research Manual

Design Manual