Government Digital Service (GDS)
Building a better GOV.UK, step by step
The 'Apply for your first provisional driving licence' step by step navigation page
Since GOV.UK launched 6 years ago it has been the home of government’s online content and the starting point for online services.
Every week millions of people use GOV.UK to do complex and sometimes life-changing tasks, such as learning to drive, registering a birth or starting a business.
We want to make these tasks as easy as possible - by making content simple and user journeys intuitive. This is good for users because it makes it quicker to get things done. And it’s good for government because it reduces unnecessary contact and casework.
Why we need to look at end to end services
We know users face challenges carrying out tasks. There’s a lot of information to find for a start. Depending on the task, there might be appointments to book, forms to fill in, applications to be made and tests to take.
And what makes this even harder is that each step needs to be done at the right time and in the right order.
That’s why government needs to look at every step of this task. From the first thing the user does, to the last thing they need to do. We need to look at services from end to end.
The difficulty government faces when trying to make this easier is that people’s real-world tasks do not always fit neatly with the way government is organised into departments and agencies.
For example, a business wanting to hire their first employee needs information and services from 5 different areas of government before they can hire them:
|Step||Government department or agency|
|Check you can afford to take on an employee||Department for Work and Pensions|
|Register as an employer||HM Revenue and Customs|
|Check a potential employee’s right to work in the UK||Home Office|
|Check a potential employee’s criminal record||Disclosure and Barring Service|
|Set up a pension scheme||The Pensions Regulator|
Organising GOV.UK by topic and task
Rather than organise GOV.UK around the structure of government, we’ve been working to organise content around user needs at scale. So, rather than being organised by department, content on GOV.UK is now organised into a single site-wide system of user-centred topics.
This topic structure will power new ways to search and browse the site, making things much easier to find.
But we want to go further – we want to make things easier to do.
So about a year ago we started experimenting with a new way for users to navigate GOV.UK. These experiments evolved into what we now call step by step navigation.
Latest News from
Government Digital Service (GDS)
The next steps for digital, data and technology in government08/04/2021 09:25:00
Alex Chisholm, Chief Operating Officer for the Civil Service and Permanent Secretary for the Cabinet Office, blogged about our appointments to the senior leadership of the DDaT (Digital, Data and Technology) profession in January of this year.
What’s next for GOV.UK in 2021 to 202230/03/2021 12:25:00
Blog posted by: Jen Allum – Head of GOV.UK, 29 March 2021 – Categories: Digital strategy, GOV.UK, Ways of working.
Public sector leadership in international digital transformation22/03/2021 13:43:00
Blog posted by: Liz Lutgendorff, Catherine Toole and Briony Wyatt, 19 March 2021 – Categories: Digital engagement, Events, Transformation.
How the FSA moved everything to the cloud18/03/2021 15:38:00
How the Food Standards Agency updated and moved the whole organisation to the cloud.
Lessons on maintaining staff engagement16/03/2021 10:10:00
It’s now been a year since the Government Digital Service (GDS) transitioned to remote working in March 2020. We have been reflecting on the challenges GDS’s Internal Communications team has faced, what we have learnt and, most importantly, we’ve taken time to celebrate success during what has been a unique and challenging year!
Introduction to the No.10 Fellowship Programme11/03/2021 13:43:00
Blog posted by: Arfah Farooq, 10 March 2021 – Categories: Digital, Data and Technology, People and skills.
Government launches new fellowship programme to attract top tech talent into the Civil Service10/03/2021 15:22:00
Digital and tech leaders can apply to the programme for an opportunity to work on some of the UK’s most important public sector challenges.
Podcast: The Clinically Extremely Vulnerable People Service26/02/2021 13:43:00
Blog posted by: GDS team, 24 February 2021 – Categories: Data, Digital, Data and Technology, GDS team, Podcast.