It was sometime in the last decade — perhaps solidified by the abysmal launch of HealthCare.gov and its subsequent resuscitation — that agencies at all levels of government began to wake up to the fact that their users really don’t like to be inconvenienced. People want to get the information or services they’re looking for fast and then move on with their lives even faster.
As commonsensical as the truisms exchanged in digital-government circles tend to be — one should put the user at the center of design, for instance — they’ve proven either exceptionally difficult for governments to implement or more slowly transmittable than anticipated. This is evidenced by the fact that many government websites remain inaccessible by mobile devices, unsecured, difficult to navigate and often do not even contain the information and services one seeks.
But help is on the way. Small, nimble teams of developers and government wonks with a passion to better serve their constituents are bucking the trend of bureaucratic indifference and inefficiency. They’re allergic to bad design, they know how to automate this task or that process, and they might even get snarky about it on Twitter — all for your convenience and delight. Overall, these are people who are dedicating their work to making government work better. Our reporters at StateScoop and EdScoop humbly present this incomplete list of organizations that we think are going to do interesting things in the coming months and years. Keep an eye on them.
This is part of StateScoop and EdScoop’s special report on user experience. Read the rest of the report.