In 2020, Los Angles County will pilot an online interactive sample ballot. This experience will allow voters the freedom to mark their ballots using their own internet-enabled devices. Voters will then be able to use these sample ballot selections to instantly fill out their official ballot and cast their vote securely at a voting center during the election.

The Challenge

In collaboration with IDEO, Smartmatic, and Votem, my responsibility as Lead UX Designer was to improve the “user experience and accessibility” of an existing (version 1) ballot prototype design. User Research data from IDEO informed my design direction.


My primary concern was creating clear user flows and adhering to WCAG and Election Assistance Commission (EAC) standards as best as possible.

Original prototype, version 1 by IDEO.

Discovery

Hi-fi chicken scratches.

Rapid, lo-fi sketching and mapping revealed a few key areas where there were opportunities for click reduction, reduced onboarding steps, and a clearer path to complete the ballot marking process.

Wireframes

LA County Interactive Sample Ballot wireframes
LA County Interactive Sample Ballot wireframes LA County Interactive Sample Ballot wireframes

Design Decision Points

LA County Design Decisions 1

Design decisions were documented and presented to all stakeholders. Using side-by-side diagrams of version 1 and version 2 (V1 | V2), I focused on communicating these suggestions from five critical top-level areas: voter opt-in, privacy settings, ballot selection, ballot summary and end-of session. Common themes included: consistant design, clear instuctions, helpful navigation and meeting accessibility standards.

Eye Tracking

LA County Eye Tracking 1

Using eye tracking software, I was able to gather immediate feedback in regards to how design decisions may impact the voter’s experience. While some results seemed to favor decisions I made, others quickly revealed areas where iterations could be made to improve clarity and flow.

Results

LA County Desktop

The updated interactive sample ballot streamlines the voter’s journey from opt-in through ballot marking confirmation. Clear instructions paired with helpful navigation reduce confusion and allow voters to focus on ballot marking. Additionally, the design meets many high-level WCAG and EAC compliance standards.

Role

IA, UX, UI, User Research, Wireframing, Copywriting