An Attempt to Redesign TN Government Websites | Project Log
Welcome to a series of blog tracing the progress of our project, redesigning Tamilnadu Government’s websites. In this blog we will look at the general roadmap of the project, and our first level of UX research and UI design conclusions.
Disclaimer: This is not an official government project but an individual attempt to redesign the website. All the use of official logos are just for illustration purposes.
Website that we are Redesigning: https://www.tn.gov.in/
Roadmap: We will be starting the project with a very basic, generic UX research, then design UI based on that research and then we will continue bootstrapping over the design with UX research of increasing details. We understand that designing UI before completing UX research will potentially lead to lot of redesigns and is not be the most efficient way to do this project. But we chose to do it because having a visual model to look at will be motivating and keep the project running.
Design of any product is based on the User Experience Research. Our aim here is to understand the users’ needs, build user personas and to design the website for the needs of users. For first level of UX Research, we are going with our own intuitions and Google Trends results.
Speaking from our own intuitions, we feel that the website is dense, fully packed with information. There are no visual leads, no visual hierarchy. Finding a particular information/functionality takes a fair amount of time. So as users, we felt that the website needs to be more structured, visually and it could be better if it had just the information that we went searching for instead of all the existing information.
That’s where we used Google Trends. We used Trends to consolidate the most searched keywords related to Tamilnadu government.
List of most sought after topics and their importance:
- Press Release (Top trend)
- Government Jobs — Government Exams, post office recruitment, direct interview jobs, latest government jobs, TNPSC (Top Trend)
- Education — NEET cutoff, government colleges (Top Trend)
- E-pass (rising trend, but temporary)
- Documents — Application Forms (less searched)
- Transport — Government bus timings (less searched)
From the above list, we concluded that these topics should be presented in home page. Along with that, for a home page of government, there should be information about the government itself. Then comes the topics government wants to endorse — Tourism, Funds, Government orders, etc., Along with these, the overall feel to the website needs to be official, because too much modernization might result in deviation of user perception of the website.
Other than that, new design should retain the font resize option as the user base will include people with different font size preferences. It should also retain the Tamil text for people that are more comfortable with Tamil.
Pages other than the home page should contain main information on left unlike the present website, which has a list of other links on left. This in accordance with the general pattern of reading — users tend to read in ‘F’ pattern, concentrated on top left corner of viewport.
Website should be light weight, as people with different levels of internet connectivity should be able to access the site.
Therefore, by the first level of UX research, we conclude these are user needs and we began designing based on it.
First and foremost task is to design the website in accordance with modern UI trends. Existing UI of the website is a decade old trend. Abiding by latest design trends and the results of first level of UX research, new UI will consist of:
- Flat 2D elements with stacked up effect(using shadows)
- Bigger font size
- Modern Font Face (sans-serif font for body of sections)
- Typewriter font is to be used for “Tamilnadu Government” to convey an official feel
- Topics that are top trends in the list above are to be incorporated in navigation bar
- An Hero banner
- A Slider News section on top
- A Government section with Governor, CM, Secretary information along with links to Minsters, Departments, Districts pages
- For rising trends that are prone to falling out of trend, there will be a Quick links section. This shall be automated with google trends results
- A Tourism section with a Carousel of photographs of tourist spots
- The Thirukkural section from original website is to be retained
- Other than home page, all pages will have a page path, just below the header, to give user a context of where they are in the website
- For other pages, a sort option in form of tags is placed before main section — sort by Department wise, service wise and category wise
And with that we set our course to design the first level of mock ups for the website. I will keep writing as the project progresses. Put up with our mistakes if any for we are in our learning phase still. If you are interested in this project, feel free to follow me to get updates of this project. If you want to collaborate with us in this project, contact us via LinkedIn(links in about section).
Thanks for reading, have a nice day.