The art of UX.
It’s not often that we Brits can be truly proud of our government – but the @GDSTeam that are transforming the GOV.uk experience are really world-class. IMHO.
They share so many of our values it’s scary. They are also so different to most of the Digital and WordPress agencies out there today – many still embrace proprietary code and old-fashioned waterfall practices.
To get a flavour of how they operate, engage with them on Twitter.
But that’s not why I think GOV.uk is the best site in the UK – it’s because for a such a large project design is entirely a function of user needs. It’s classic function over form (another core belief for us) and in world where classic web design is dying due to irrelevance it’s a refreshingly new approach.
Now, that’s not to say web design is going to die overnight (it’s one of these long-term predictions again). However, the availability of high-quality, open-source templates, standardised mobile and device technology and accepted practices are surely the beginning of the end for fancy design.
Note that the respected UX crystal-ball gazer, Jakub Nielsen predicted this 15 years ago.
As web-form takes a back-seat to web-functionality, we’ll see a cleaner, easier-to-use web that will make navigating and using digital services a great deal simpler. If you go back to the early nineties, you’ll have seen the same thing when MS-Windows came along and democratised application design via a set of standard toolkits.
This is where we are at now – the beginning of the end of web-design. The agency world is largely clueless, much of their profit comes from churning out different-for-difference-sakes designs. But they’re not really very different, are they? Take a look at the top 10 WordPress agencies to see what I mean.
What you get is a selection of vanity sliders, pointless transitions and silly animations – they’re still living in a world where form outranks function. You’ll see none of that on GOV.uk – and that’s a good thing.
by Martin Dower, CEO