The vision provider


The vision provider WHO THEY ARE

The vision provider is often a creative director for a digital team. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

They want a cohesive resource they can point their team and contractors to so they can create consistent products and experiences. This person is more likely to advocate for adoption of the standards in their agency if they believe in the broad mission of the standards. CONCERNS & CHALLENGES

They may face challenges convincing less experienced folks on their team on why the standards are important, or they may themselves not want to override the brand identity for their agency that has already been developed. They wonder how much they can customize the standards before they defeat the purpose of a unified user experience.


The newbie


The newbie WHO THEY ARE

The newbie is a designer or front end developer who is new to government and early in their career. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

They’re excited to prove their metal, but they may not be experienced enough to create new designs or stand up prototypes quickly. CONCERNS & CHALLENGES

They don’t fully understand the need for design standards. They may resist using design standards because they don’t want their creativity to be stifled.


The lone ranger


The lone ranger WHO THEY ARE

The lone ranger is a one-off (or two-off ) designer or front end developer in an agency, trying to do the right thing but without a lot of time or support. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

They will use the standards to cut down on design and development time, and as leverage for arguing for best practices to higher ups who might otherwise pull rank on design or development decisions. CONCERNS & CHALLENGES

The lone ranger wants to be able to get started with the standards quickly and not have to fuss with a lot of compatibility issues. They worry about tying their projects to a resource without knowing whether or not it will be maintained.


The master builder


The master builder WHO THEY ARE

The master builder is a savvy developer who is working alone or with others and is looking for components to download and integrate. They see their code as their personal craft and value clean, semantic markup that is easy to manipulate. They have strong opinions on how code should be written and want to know why specific decisions were made about the code within the standards. Bloat is their enemy — they only want to add code that is absolutely necessary. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

The Master Builder doesn’t want to have to do mindless “grunt work” such as styling tables or making form fields accessible, and would rather focus their attention on more creative problem solving.


The reviewer


The reviewer WHO THEY ARE

The reviewer is charged with inspecting other teammates’ code or design and making sure this work is up to snuff. They’re usually quite experienced in their role and may have to support others who don’t have as much professional experience. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

The reviewer wants to point to the standards to help these folks implement good front end code, reducing the amount of emergency clean-up they have to deal with. They may refer to the standards documentation when reviewing code, especially when it comes to ensuring accessibility.


The decider


The decider WHO THEY ARE

The decider chooses whether or not to use the standards on a project. They assess what is offered in the standards with the needs and state of their project. They may be in a position of authority, or they may be at the front lines looking to make recommendations to higher ups. CONCERNS & CHALLENGES

They will ask questions about how the standards will be maintained and how they will integrate with existing technology stacks and work-flows.


The McGyver



The McGyver is a back end developer who has been charged with front end design and development, despite protests. This person has to produce web pages despite their lack of experience with the persnickety inconsistencies of browser rendering, dependency management — CSS is their nemesis. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

They would like a resource with downloadable templates and components so they stand up sites quickly can get back to what they love — arguing data schematics.


The pinch hitter


The pinch hitter WHO THEY ARE

This person has a design background and is very skilled in HTML and CSS; they may be familiar with JS, but they’re not an expert. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

The pinch hitter values design but struggles to implement their vision in code. They depend on the standards to help them bring their design ideas to life. CONCERNS & CHALLENGES

They rely on the pattern library components to work out of the box, and they need explanations of any dependencies and how to implement them. They are concerned about conflicts with existing frameworks because these are difficult to resolve with their limited development experience.


The influencer


The influencer WHO THEY ARE

The influencer likes the idea of creating a consistent user experience across government websites and wants to empower government employees to work toward this goal. They believe in the broad mission of the project and are motivated by the desire to improve government. They play a key role in advocating for adoption of the standards.


The contract manager


The contract manager WHO THEY ARE

The contract manager is in charge of managing work for — you guessed it — government contractors. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

They want their projects to benefit from quality design and front end development work, but do not necessarily know what it looks like or how to enforce it. They want to be able to specify that contractors follow web design standards with specific legalese, and they may point to the standards when contractors provide them with wonky designs or code.


The clock racer


The clock racer WHO THEY ARE

This unfortunate soul has been given way too much work to do in too little time. WHY THEY’RE USING THE STANDARDS

They want to be able to stand up quick prototypes and sites with minimal fuss. They choose resources that allow them to get up and running quickly and they don’t want to have to read a lot of documentation to be able to do it. CONCERNS & CHALLENGES

They are more likely to choose a tool they are already familiar with than to experiment with an unfamiliar resource. If getting started is too confusing or takes too long, they will choose a different resource. Copy-paste is their M.O.

draft U.S. Web Design Standards

User archetype cards

WDS User Archetypes MASTER.indd - GitHub

government and early in their career. WHY THEY'RE USING THE STANDARDS ... technology stacks and work-flows. USER ARCHETYPE. The reviewer.

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