CASE STUDY Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency

Introducing digital driving tests

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency conducts practical driving tests to ensure that candidates can drive safely and responsibly. The paper-based driving test process, which remained largely unchanged since it’s introduction in 1934, was quickly becoming a system no longer fit for purpose to manage nearly two million tests a year. In line with the DVSA’s transformation to becoming a digitally enabled organisation, the paper based driving test report was identified as a key transformation priority.

A screen flow
In collaboration with DVSA, we designed and engineered a digital and automated solution to replace the paper-based driving test report, where examiners can capture results electronically. enabling improved service delivery, reliability and performance.


The new system can be operated by over 1,900 examiners via a tablet, and provides remote access to other DVSA corporate systems, email and their intranet. This enables a smoother service delivery to examinees, and improves reliability, performance and resilience in examiners.

85 year old
business process transformed
1,900 employees
digitally enabled

An iterative approach based on Agile methodology

Our main challenge in designing the UI was to reduce the cognitive load so that Driving Examiners can mark the test while maintaining situational awareness.​ We conducted simulated and controlled in-car usability tests with users of various digital competencies and confidence and iterated the prototype based on user feedback. ​ We tested the end-to-end service with users and supported the organization with progressive examiner engagement. ​

“The panel considers this work exemplary in spirit and practice. We encourage DVSA to share the story of this work (and the lessons learned from it) both internally and across government.”

– GDS Beta Assessment report


We worked closely with Driving examiners to co-create the user interface. ​We tested prototypes and new features with a group of early adopters of various digital competencies. This enabled us to better understand user needs and quickly sped up design explorations. ​We also tested the service with users with additional needs and engaged an external body to conduct an accessibility audit to ensure the service works for everyone.​

Designing 16+ vehicle categories required an optimisation of the design workflow. While we had to maintain a focus on safety for all in-vehicle tests​ we also adapted the UI to to meet each vehicle category. To minimise variations across the various digital tests and ensure a consistent user experience​ we built a design library of UI components.


“The benchmark for any future DVSA project has well and truly been set extremely high and this project will be held in high esteem throughout the agency, and government, for a long time to come.”

– Gordon Witherspoon, Service Owner

An example of the system on an ipad
An example of the system on an ipad

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