Start with needs*
*user needs not government needs
The design process must start with identifying and thinking about real user needs. We should design around those — not around the way the ‘official process’ is at the moment. We must understand those needs thoroughly — interrogating data, not just making assumptions — and we should remember that what users ask for is not always what they need.
We use ‘needs’ as an organising principle since people come to our sites to accomplish tasks and to fulfil needs, not just to hang out. Focusing on needs means we can concentrate on the things that deliver most value for money.