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So, we've been talking about Government Digital Services (GDS) and GOV.UK quite a lot on the Econsultancy blog.

This is for two reasons. One: it's great (in the middle of open, agile transformation that starts from without). Two: Mike Bracken is speaking at the awesome Festival of Marketing in November.

Here I've rounded up 10 of the best blog posts from GOV.UK's 59 (count them!) blogs. Each post deals with user experience, service design or digital transformation.

I hope you enjoy them as much as we have.

How to smooth the user journey

Six principles here for designing an experience that guides people to the right content on your website.

Read the post.

How to build trust with the people who use your digital services

A large part of the redesign work being done is about simplicity, writing for people and testing the user experience.

In this post, Ben Holliday lays out some ways in which GDS has tried to build trust in the application process for Carer's Allowance, one of 25 exemplar services under construction.

The tips are applicable to any marketer building forms and asking for information.

Read the post.

circle of mistrust

How to use sticky notes for agile user research

This post looks at analysing the findings of user research, doing this in an agile process making hefty use of sticky notes.

If you've ever aspired to the augury of productivity that is a wall of sticky notes, but never managed it in practice, this post is for you.

Read the post.

How to show real-time internal search terms in Google Analytics

A hugely useful practical post here walking through the process of using advanced filters to create realtime reports for internal search terms.

Read the post.

google analytics real-time dashboard

How to label your audience in your website's navigation

Here's a more specific bit of UX work. This post looks at the success or otherwise of referring to users within your navigation.

Through testing, the team seeks to understand if labelling topics by audience (e.g. professionals, industry, etc) would improve speed and ease of navigation for people.

The conclusions are of interest for anyone with a content rich website.

Read the post.

How to truly commit to style

One of the things GOV.UK has been lauded for is its revised style guide. It makes for clear and often amusing reading.

This post shows just how far commitment to style goes with GDS, as Whitehall Publisher (the CMS) has been updated to included a 'words to avoid' checker, which highlights any of the top 10 words to avoid.

Read the post.

plain english in whitehall publisher

How to make films

Another string to the GDS's bow is smart production of video.

These videos are short, instructional and take into account context, audience and subject matter. This post is a little insight into how the videos are planned and executed.

Useful for anybody planning short video for their site. 

Read the post.

How to design for user needs and personas

This post gives some background into the revolution at GDS started in part by a review from Martha Lane Fox.

Aside from this background to improving government services, there's some great help here on how to work with personas.

Read the post.

The philosophy of user experience

For as good as definition of the hazy term 'user experience' as you're likely to get.

Read the post.

Technology and tools

I found this post enlightening - on building a proof of concept for the Land Registry.

The tools used to build, to work remotely and communicate are listed. It's inspiring stuff but directly usable for any project manager hoping to go down this route.

Read the post.

To hear from Mike about life on the inside, be sure to check out the Festival of Marketing.

Ben Davis

Published 5 August, 2014 by Ben Davis @ Econsultancy

Ben Davis is a senior writer at Econsultancy. He lives in Manchester, England. You can contact him at ben.davis@econsultancy.com, follow at @herrhuld or connect via LinkedIn.

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Comments (3)

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Melanie Clarke, Online Marketing Executive at Spire HealthcareSmall Business

Thanks for this post Ben - I found it really useful and interesting to see how GOV is changing their culture and putting the user needs first.

over 2 years ago

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Colette Verbanic

Great info Ben! I’ve learned so much from this blog. Hopefully others can find value in my site as well….

over 2 years ago

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joe albert, Ceo at ultimate miracle cure

Great info Ben! I’ve learned so much from this blog. Hopefully others can find value in my site as well….

about 2 years ago

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