Reworking the American digital expertise: The way forward for the U.S. Net Design System and past

Reworking the American digital expertise: The way forward for the U.S. Net Design System and past

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Transforming the American digital experience

Reworking the American digital expertise: The way forward for the U.S. Net Design System and past

For thousands and thousands of People, entry to digital companies isn’t a luxurious — it’s vital. And the way we ship these companies is simply as vital as what companies we ship. To enhance, we’ve got to take a extra holistic have a look at the fragmented ecosystem of the hundreds of federal web sites that at present exist, all of which supply totally different experiences for the general public to navigate.

The U.S. Net Design System (USWDS) is only one piece of widespread federal efforts to enhance the general public’s expertise of presidency digital companies. The design system gives rules, steering, and code to assist federal companies ship nice digital experiences by making it simpler to construct accessible, mobile-friendly authorities web sites.

The USWDS staff just lately printed a analysis report—based mostly on the biggest analysis effort in our historical past—that summarizes our findings and descriptions near-term alternatives to realize a future imaginative and prescient for the design system, in addition to a North Star imaginative and prescient for serving to enhance authorities digital companies as a complete.

We carried out analysis throughout dozens of federal companies to:

  • Perceive how groups are coping with emergency response conditions (particularly COVID-19) when it comes to their digital communications
  • Establish how USWDS can higher assist companies sooner or later
  • Uncover extra insights into enhancing federal digital companies as a complete for the American public
  • Decide methods to advance the design system by means of collaboration with companies and different authorities buyer expertise initiatives

What we found

Businesses shared some widespread advantages that the design system gives:

  • Makes exhausting issues straightforward by offering a place to begin and strong basis for constructing web sites
  • Supplies helpful elements and clear, well-written steering that’s backed by consumer analysis and UX finest practices
  • Helps them make extra data-informed selections utilizing standardized, constant, and accessible finest practices, as a substitute of counting on private judgment
  • Saves time and power in order that they can concentrate on their mission and extra of what their prospects want
  • May help construct belief with the general public by offering continuity throughout federal web sites, decreasing present fragmented and inconsistent experiences

Even given all these advantages, there are rising use circumstances and ongoing challenges that companies need assistance overcoming. This led to the creation of 11 new elements and web page templates for emergency response, in addition to 5 key findings that summarized what company groups must efficiently undertake, use, and keep the design system, in addition to concerns for the USWDS staff and others as we begin to remedy these challenges.

“The extra we use the design system to standardize how we construct digital experiences, the extra we’ll enhance how the federal internet features.” — From a digital modernization thought-leader throughout interviews

Based mostly on these findings, the design system staff has prioritized some key alternative areas:

  • Enhance strategic communications and engagement with key audiences
  • Present extra strong steering and assist round getting began with the design system
  • Leverage associated efforts inside TTS and the broader authorities digital companies group

There are additionally some bigger strategic selections to be made about the simplest working mannequin for federal web sites and the design system that helps them. Even with improved steering and assist, the design system and the companies utilizing it’ll proceed to run up towards resourcing and scaling challenges.

Our North Star imaginative and prescient thinks past company adoption to ask the next:

What if the federal authorities offered much more strong expertise shared companies to scale back the burden on particular person companies?

So as a substitute of each company attempting to construct and handle all facets of their very own websites, the federal authorities may present an choice of a real turnkey service, transferring the particular expertise burden to a specialised staff. This could permit company assets to be freed as much as concentrate on their mission-related actions. Utilizing shared companies could possibly be cheaper and simpler, whereas additionally enabling smaller websites to launch and keep their content material extra effectively.

What if key content material and performance of presidency web sites was consolidated right into a single or fewer public companies web sites, like usa.gov and recreation.gov?

A extra consolidated on-line public companies web site (a real “federal entrance door”) may present a greater, extra dependable consumer expertise for the general public, whereas selling extra environment friendly efforts, analysis, and content material. Constructing unbiased websites with tight coupling to GSA’s widespread authorities services (cloud, search, analytics, design, and implementation) would additionally promote improved continuity, safety, belief, and long-term maintainability whereas addressing among the persistent infrastructure challenges of decentralized implementation.

The trail ahead

With every discovering, we pose some questions that reframe what we discovered into alternatives for progressive options. Listed here are a couple of of these inquiries to get the wheels of innovation turning.

  • How would possibly we higher clarify what twenty first Century IDEA means for companies and assist them perceive how they’re performing?
  • How would possibly we assist companies anticipate and plan for the prices and staffing wants related to design system adoption?
  • How would possibly we higher talk a “by the individuals, for the individuals” mindset?
  • How would possibly we encourage and assist extra cross-agency collaboration?
  • How would possibly we offer extra in depth buyer assist to prospects?

We’re at an thrilling second within the evolution of digital companies in authorities to take a extra holistic strategy to enhancing the general public’s expertise by scaling what works and persevering with to spend money on the design and expertise capabilities of our federal workforce.

Learn the entire analysis report and be part of the USWDS group to be taught extra and keep up to date on progress.

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