VEC Voters Voice

About the Entry

Our native iPad app features a Communication Board that can set up ahead of voting, the Victorian Electoral Commission’s (VEC) Easy English Guides and Auslan footage for hearing-impaired voters.

It follows mobile WCAG 2.0 AAA compliance. Cost savings for the VEC are estimated to be around $1M.

Features & Benefits

01

Design

The design is tailored specifically for voters with complex communication difficulties and literacy issues. To ensure a connection with our intended market we followed mobile WCAG 2.0 AAA compliance to guide visual and interaction design.

We ensured an emotional connection and intuitive functionality through iterative design sessions with representative users, staff from disability agencies and support workers.

Usability

We have ensured ease of use by adherence to WCAG 2.0 AAA compliance and Apple’s iOS Accessibility APIs, developer tools and utilities, particularly around speech synthesis to deliver text-to-speech functionality.

User experience is enhanced through the use of the VEC’s Easy English Guides for council elections and plain English information on enrolling and voting.
Auslan footage is provided for deaf or hearing-impaired voters.
Iterative testing with representative users ensured the design met customer expectations.

Client ease of use is met with a Content Management System, providing customization opportunities, supporting changes based on built-in analytics and the ability to send notifications to voters

Creativity and Innovation

Our client and research from disability agencies indicates the free Voters Voice iPad app is the first of its type in the world.

Other products leverage either expensive software solutions or custom physical boards that do not have capacity to provide information. No other solution offers tailored voting terminology.

Our use of Apple’s iOS Accessibility APIs, developer tools and utilities, particularly around speech synthesis to deliver text-to-speech functionality, show our commitment to the creative use of technology.

The app also provides our client with rich data on usage and user need, driving better accessibility service delivery and decision making in government.

Content and Quality

The design has been professionally executed employing human-centred design techniques, including collaborative design and iterative testing with representative users, staff from disability agencies and support workers. This approach ensured the execution of high usability and an appropriate information architecture.

Our client and Scope had input into the content ensuring appropriateness for the intended audience. Our use of text-to-speech functionality, the design of the communications board and the Auslan content ensured connection with the target market.

Commerciality

Cost savings to the VEC were estimated to be in the range of $1M when considered against the cost of printing hardcopy communication boards and training up to 17,000 staff in the use of the boards for a State election event (as the VEC didn’t know which centres users would attend – so all staff required training). This provides a massive and instant return on investment.

The core modules can easily be taken up by other Government service departments, both at home and abroad, who can adjust content to suit.

The app also gives a voice to those members of the community facing particular hardships due to a physical, degenerative or intellectual impairment who, in the main, do not have high disposable incomes.

Key Sustainability Design Features and Benefits

The app increases the prospect of civic participation and the capacity of government to meaningfully interact across what was a digital divide. This is a digital-first, citizen-centric delivery of government services.

Enrolling and voting is mandatory in Victoria/Australia – and also an important human right and responsibility. Many people with complex communication problems either don’t vote or use postal votes due to the difficulties communicating with election staff.
This free app enables them to fully participate. It empowers a section of the community typically under-represented in voting, in a non-threatening way. The communication board can also used in other aspects of their everyday lives e.g. shopping

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VEC Voters Voice