User journeys

Understanding who we are solving a problem for is important for creating user-centric digital services. An 'As-Is' user journey can help identify touchpoints, inefficiencies, pain points, opportunities for improvement and can inform the design of a 'To-Be' user journey that represents the desired state of the user experience after changes have been made.

Abu Dhabi Digital Authority aligned its digitization strategy around 80 user journeys available through TAMM, a one-stop shop for all digital government services.

Abu Dhabi's digitisation based on user journeys, Finalist of GovStack WSIS Special Prize 2023

The 'To-Be' user journey is created in the context of a redesign or improvement of service. Its aim is to create a better user experience by identifying and implementing changes that will improve the user's journey and ultimately lead to greater satisfaction for its users. Redesign of the service can be based on the following simplification principles:

Simplification recommendations
  • Minimize redundancies by integrating and streamlining steps across the user journey. This can be achieved by: retrieving information required to obtain a service from registries; tailoring unified forms that are auto-filled and require only the data that does not already exist within registries.

  • Silence signifies tacitly expressed consent. Shifting the burden of proof in administrative proceedings. Example: Notifying the government of new business operations instead of requesting a business license.

  • Elimination of requirements, data, or documents. Example: Validation of information through consulting the data from registries instead of requesting the user to present copies of documents.

  • Reduction of the maximum term of resolution. Example: reduction in the time between application and approval for a business license.

  • Extension of validity (to avoid the need for continuous renewals).

  • Immediate resolution procedure. Access to registries should be completely automated, for example, obtaining birth certificates and attestation of no prosecution.

'Public Service Reengineering Methodology' from Moldova, the winner of WSIS Special Prize 2023 is a good example of service re-design guidelines used to train digital service teams across Moldova's Government entities.

Find below a translated version of the aforementioned methodology.

  • Synthesize user research: Methods provide instructions on several different ways to tell users’ stories, including journey maps, user scenarios, storyboards. (Source: 18F)

  • Depending on the complexity of the service, you can request alignment from business leads on initial prioritization to focus on additional research activities.

  • Present research findings, service design process, user journeys, opportunities for improvement, current & future Building Blocks/DPGs, service architecture, user personas, and service digitization roadmap in a 'Service Design Proposal'. An example of EPR Service Design proposal can be found below:


Touchpoint: A point of contact or interaction between a service and the user. Examples: physical visits to a government office, sending documents via post, phone call, sms, e-mail, voice command, and more.

Painpoint: A persistent or recurring problem, as with a step within the service, that frequently inconveniences or annoys users. Example: filling multiple forms to access a service.

Opportunity for improvement: These are possible simplifications that can improve the user experience. Please refer to the simplification principles.

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