10. Make sure that the service is simple enough that users succeed first time unaided.

Users of local government services have a wide range of differing digital skills and competencies, for example, they may be able to use a tablet, but have never used a mouse/keyboard combination.

Services need to be designed, developed and tested, to reduce confusion for the user and make the journey as intuitive as possible. Point 1 of the Standard sets out how the service should be designed focussed on the user. Exploratory testing - using the service as a user would, without a script to test a predetermined outcome - should be performed.

Only the information needed for the service to be provided successfully should be captured from the user. This should reduce the need for follow-up correspondence.

User and accessibility testing should take place throughout the process to ensure the service is as inclusive as possible. Making your service accessible for those with the highest needs tends to make it easier to use for everyone else, with better search results, reduced maintenance costs and increased audience reach, amongst other benefits. If you exclude anyone from using your service based on disability, you may be in breach of the Equality Act 2010.

You must plan to continually measure satisfaction of your service and carry out ongoing user research to continually improve the user experience.

There are many ways to achieve this and these are set out in the relevant points of the Local Government Digital Service Standard and the W3C Accessibility Standards.


The Standard was launched on 7 April 2016.

This guidance was last amended on 17 June 2016 as part of Service Standard Sprint #1.

You can read more about the Standard here.

All content in this guide is available under the Open Government Licence v3.0, except where otherwise stated.