Late September and a 6am start means a dark morning but nevertheless I was ready and waiting for a day of usability testing with fleet companies based in Bristol and the South West.
Our destination: Motability in Bristol Business Park.
Our mission: to demonstrate the View Vehicle Record (VVR) and Disposal to Trade prototypes and seek opinions, feedback and potential improvements.
Together with colleagues from Customer Insight, Business Change and the Vehicle Management Product Owner, we had knowledge of the systems, information about upcoming change in DVLA and a laptop to access the prototypes and record the results.
First up were Motability, a high volume fleet operator with around 620,000 vehicles under their management. VVR will mean they’ll be able to access their fleet with a few clicks of a mouse – a bit different to now where they have an electronic carousel filing cabinet (or 3!!) which uses a laptop to enter search details for the registration certificate (V5C) they want to retrieve.
Once retrieved the cabinet rotates to present the file’s location where the V5C can be found. Motability send DVLA between 500 and 1200 notifications of disposal to a motor trader a day. As you can imagine they were eager to see how they could use the online Disposal to Trade system to their advantage. Feedback from the session told us that they may take longer initially but the benefits of such a process would negate this in the long term.
This will give our customers a system that they want and find easy to use
Usability testing is all about getting the user to navigate the system. The software used records the movement of the mouse and where the user looks and clicks on the screen. This provides valuable insight into the customer journey and helps us to develop our services, focusing on the customer’s needs. Other fleet operators followed throughout the day including Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service, Mobile Windscreens and SITA UK Ltd, each sending representatives who were likely to be the ones directly involved in using the online system once introduced.
These sessions mean our stakeholders can freely ask questions
One hot topic of the day was undoubtedly the abolition of the tax disc, with questions around what this meant for them as a business as well as personally.
The Product Owner’s presence at the event meant each session began with an overview of the change taking place in DVLA and what they could expect to see over the next few months.
Comments throughout the day gave us much food for thought with suggestions for improvements to the way the services look online to questions about other services and general feedback including:
I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t sign up to this!
We can’t wait for this to start as it will make things so much easier
Craig Phillips from DVLA’s Business Change team said:
The visit was very informative for both the customer and DVLA representatives, including myself. Having not being personally involved with the VVR Project, it was nice to see the demonstration of what customers will see and how they will use the system. It was helpful that Customer Insight allowed the customer to navigate the prototype themselves, giving them free reign on what they viewed/selected. This allowed the team to collate relevant information to capture customer’s needs and suggestions for changes/improvements.
By demonstrating the disposal to trade service, it was good to see the positive response from the customers. They all seemed keen to use the service and were content with the look and feel of the system. After discussing both theirs and DVLA’s current processes, it was useful to see how they operate in relation to disposals and how having an online channel will improve their service for themselves and their customers.
I’d like to thank everyone who took part in the user testing, we’ll continue to engage with stakeholders and provide regular updates via this blog.