Why it’s important

There are benefits for users and creators when we design with users, for users.


  • Get what they need
  • Contribute to the process and inform decisions


  • Avoid creating unnecessary things by validating and meeting user needs along the way. This helps reduce risk, and can save us time and effort.
  • Incorporate users’ unique needs into the design as there’s no ‘one size fits all’ approach
  • Make decisions based on facts, not assumptions
  • Know the service needs to evolve in response to changing user needs

How we get there

To design with users, for users, we need to:

Learn about the users
Identify and describe:

  • who they are including their location, literacy, digital capability and cultural background
  • any barriers to using the service
  • what their pain points are with the current process 
  • what their needs are
  • what they are trying to achieve
  • how and where they’ll use the service
  • how the service will affect their lives

Design and test with users
Get input from a diverse range of users throughout design and delivery, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and people with accessibility needs. 

Evolve the service in response to user feedback so it remains relevant to their needs: 

  • Talk to users early and often
  • Get the "thing" into their hands to test
  • Learn how they use the service end-to-end
  • Prioritise incorporating user feedback

Design for inclusivity
Make the service accessible by addressing barriers to use. These barriers could be:

  • cultural
  • language
  • location
  • disability
  • technological

Some ways to break down the barriers:

  • use plain language
  • have digital and non-digital options
  • ensure websites meet WCAG 2.0AA at a minimum

Think end-to-end
Look at the whole journey for the user:

  • the digital and non-digital parts
  • the Government and non-Government parts

Make sure there’s no unnecessary complexity
Minimise effort for users by creating services that are simple and intuitive to use, so users:

  • can find it, understand it, use it, and achieve what they set out to do the first time without prior knowledge or help
  • are not exposed to the internal workings of government

Make the service as robust as it needs to be
Ensure the service:

  • gets the job done
  • is reliable, supported and maintained
  • meets user demand

Close the feedback loop
Explain to users why their feedback is or isn’t being used. This helps them understand the reason behind decisions.

Respect our users
Be honest and develop trust with users. This includes asking for their permission to take part in user research.

Make data driven decisions
Use qualitative and quantitative data from research to make evidence-based decisions. 

Mandatory bits



Understand and comply with responsibilities to make our services accessible to everyone


Make web content meet WCAG 2.0AA so it is accessible to people with disabilities

Know when and how to register for a new domain name or change an existing one. Well named domains can make it easier for users to find and remember websites.