Ignacia Orellana

Improving whole user journeys on GOV.UK

by Ignacia


GOV.UK works well now if you know what you need to do as a discrete transaction - like, applying for a passport. But fundamentally, the structure of online services reflects the existing structure of government.

The fact that online services reflect the existing structure of government makes it difficult to support complex interactions that include multiple government departments.

For this reason, journeys like starting and sustaining a business are harder than they should be for users.

‘Starting a Business whole user journey’ was one of the lighthouse projects that were initiated in GDS to demonstrate the value of good data use, and to help reveal common blockers to progress in joining up services across organisational boundaries.
The ‘start a business’ was chosen as a test case as it's an example of a complex but necessary service that cuts across at least 10 different departments.

This project was about improving, and linking together the process of starting a business on GOV.UK, while learning how GOV.UK could support departments in improving other life events.

My role and approach

I did this by designing the way in which GOV.UK and GDS approaches mapping, scoping,  and defining a whole user journey that cuts across multiple organisations and transactional services.

Working closely with Policy and Strategy, we explored different governance models to help deliver improvements in the future, for example by setting up a cross government steering group with senior leaders in the departments to set roles, responsibilities and accountability.

I explored GOV.UK’s potential role and helped develop our service offer as a programme, spotting opportunities to tie our work into wider GOV.UK and government strategy on better use of data and more personalised, joined-up services.

Feeding into senior stakeholder steering groups and papers showcasing the Start a business case study as a test case.

For more on this work:

I articulated the start, sustain and grow a business space

Developed a service landscape that mapped guidance, transactional services, channels, and departments involved at each step of the user's journey on GOV.UK

Explored ways in which GOV.UK could support departments

With Martin Lugton, Lorna Howes, Rob Rockstroh, Amina Omar, Crispin Fu and the Start a business whole user journey team