Work NDIS Website redevelopment

Deliverables
  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Customer interviews
  • Surveys
  • Information Architecture
  • Wireframe design
  • Prototype testing
  • Website interface design
  • Front-end development
  • Drupal 8 development
  • Hosting set-up & management
Overview

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) implements the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), which supports a better life for Australians with a significant and permanent disability, and their families and carers.

After winning a competitive tender, Icon was appointed to overhaul the usability of the NDIS website and redevelop on Drupal – the leading enterprise-level open source platform.

 
Background

NDIS takes a participant-first approach

There are around 4.3 million Australians who have a disability. The NDIS offers a new approach to supporting people with disabilities that’s been developed around two core principles:

  • Giving people with disability better choice and control over their funding and supports, and
  • Helping them reach their goals through reasonable and necessary support.

The new website needed to assist Australian's more easily access the NDIA's world-leading Scheme. Understanding these needs meant interviewing and listing to a broad range of user types, each with a unique set of requirements and opinions. 

Challenges

Building a website for speed and accessibility

Australian Government agencies are required to deliver information and services in a non-discriminatory and accessible manner. Websites should be built using guidelines set by the Web Accessibility Initiative – using techniques that aid vision, hearing and mobility impaired users. 

The new NDIS website needed to meet Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2 AA principals, making it easy for all users to locate web-based information and services. An improved search function was required, and the site's layout needed to adapt based on screen size – a process known as 'responsive design'.

A new content structure and clearer layout of information were also required to explain key NDIS information and processes.

Solution

Creating clear pathways to relevant information

To fully understand a project's requirements you need to empathise with users. For Icon's UX team this required unpacking internally held information and undertaking an Australia-wide tour to meet a range of NDIS Participants, Partners and Providers. These listening sessions included:

User interviews with:

  • NDIS Participants to understand the diversity of NDIS experiences within the Scheme (for example new vs established users, understanding the NDIS, eligibility and the application process, creating a personalised plan, using their plan, and annually reviewing their plan)
  • Support Coordinators to better understand how they communicate and use the website when guiding participants on common types of information
  • Service Providers who need to understand the scheme and promote their services within it

Workshops and focus groups 
To understand common problems and pain points with the previous website and get first impressions on visual design and content layers

Usability testing of prototypes

  • To test information architecture
  • Finding information and completing tasks
  • Observed usability behaviour 

Insights were gathered, interpreted, expressed and tested using prototype wireframes and a new site structure.

A new design system (see explanation here) was created to consistently express the NDIS brand – from an icon to an entire page. Our developers then set about building AA compliant front-end code, deploying and configuring Drupal CMS, and migrating content. Highlights of our solution include:

  • Drupal 8 development
  • Powerful and easy to use site editor
  • Card Sorting and Optimal Workshop TreeJack testing
  • AA accessibility level, including mobile screen readers
  • Optimised front-end code and graphics for fast page loading speed
  • Location search
  • Improved site search
  • Responsive layout that's optimised for mobile

The new NDIS website was successfully launched in January 2019 and can be seen in action here