The Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs (DAPIP) is an old database utilized by a select few agencies and the U.S. Department of Education.
The web portal is over a decade old, has a non-responsive design, doesn't utilize a proper flow or sequence, and is not user-friendly. The departments and agencies utilizing this portal were facing problems keeping the records up-to-date and relevant and also had issues with finding the needed information quickly and efficiently.
I played a pivotal role working with the development team, project managers, and testers. It involved running cross-functional meetings with the various teams, utilizing the user reports and direct feedback to create an issue report.
I would introduce best practices and utilize previous experiences with large-scale portals to create wire frames and process flows. The teams would then discuss these new solutions and I would create a final design which the development team then implemented to the new DAPIP portal.
After sharing best practices, new designs, and work-flows, we created a new process that optimized the portal for the DAPIP userbase.
We ensured Section 508 compliance so that people with disabilities would have the same ease of access as people without disabilities.
We also completely redesigned the portal to include reactive features, making sure it worked on all platforms, not just desktops. The new portal focused on a user-centered design – making it much easier to input and find the information needed.
The Department of Education is happy with the new user-friendly design. The expected outcome is a significant drop in Help Desk calls for inputting information and finding records. Weekly meetings regarding design and compliance have concluded and the new web application is close to complete. The new web application is user-friendly, easy to navigate, much more intuitive, and compliance to Section 508.