Design patterns for government services: A community, not a library

A session at Interaction16

Wednesday 2nd March, 2016

10:30am to 11:30am (HMT)

At GOV.UK, we aim to build services that are ‘consistent, not uniform’.
But as more teams across government built services on GOV.UK, we found that we weren’t being consistent. For example, we had several ways of asking for a date of birth, and we knew that some worked much better than others.

We wanted to share best practices between designers, and spread more quickly what we were learning from our extensive user research.

We knew we wanted to create some design patterns. But we’d seen many pattern libraries fail: full of great advice, launched with great fanfare, but largely ignored and quickly out-dated.

From the start, we put as much effort into building the community around our design patterns, as we did building the patterns themselves. And we now have a community of designers, user researchers and others that actively discusses, challenges, and updates the patterns.

In this talk we’ll describe how we create and maintain our patterns, how we involve colleagues across government, the lessons we’ve learned and our future plans.

About the speaker

This person is speaking at this event.
John Waterworth

User experience research and design at Usable Insights and Government Digital Service

Coverage of this session

Sign in to add slides, notes or videos to this session


Finland Finland, Helsinki

2nd4th March 2016

Tell your friends!


Time 10:30am11:30am HMT

Date Wed 2nd March 2016

Short URL


Official event site


View the schedule


See something wrong?

Report an issue with this session