There are always times when a service or product succeeds with its aesthetic front but fails to deliver the information and functionality desired. So, what happens when your audience’s sole reason for visiting the website you’re responsible for isn’t for the design, but purely the content? This is a question Ben Terrett (Head of Design for the Government Digital Service) and Sarah Richards (Content Design Lead for Government Digital Service) have asked and then seemingly answered. Their solution; to view content and design as the same thing. The website applying this principle is the single domain for the UK government GOV.UK, which marked the Government Digital Service’s first major project.
As an established figure in the design world (winning the Design Museum’s Designs of The Year Award in 2010, formerly working for Wieden+Kennedy and judging the D&AD awards on a number of occasions) Ben Terrett is well placed to ensure that the Government is offering functional, accessible digital products that maintain their usefulness well into the future.
This aim has been translated into reality by the team’s process and Ben’s unique partnership with Sarah Richards. Sarah’s background in design has instilled in her a communicative clarity that filters into every content driven project she’s involved with – in fact, all the content from DirectGov and BusinessLink has been completely rewritten by Sarah and the team; no small task, but one that has rejuvenated the communication and information relationship between provider and consumer.
Ben and Sarah will be talking about the process behind this fascinating venture; how they work together (both sharing and arguing), and learn from others (including design luminary Margaret Calvert) to highlight how multi-disciplinary teams can collaborate to create world class visual communication.
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