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GOV.UK Verify

GOV.UK Verify: Technical delivery update, 13 September 2016

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Delivery, Technical

This blog post is for anyone interested in the technical development of GOV.UK Verify.

In our first technical delivery update we explained that there are 3 parts to GOV.UK Verify and the delivery team is responsible for building and maintaining 2 of them: the GOV.UK Verify hub and Document Checking Service.

Currently, we’re working on 3 technical delivery priorities: increasing adoption (by departments) of GOV.UK Verify; improving the completion rate for GOV.UK Verify users; and improving and maintaining GOV.UK Verify.

As GOV.UK Verify is live, our work to maintain and improve the service continues at pace. Here’s a summary of what we’ve been working on since our last update back in August and what we plan to do next.

Increasing adoption of GOV.UK Verify

We want departments across government to increasingly adopt GOV.UK Verify because it’s secure, straightforward and meets the needs of their users.

To improve GOV.UK Verify and make it better for users, since our last update we’ve improved the application that helps departments match user identities with records in their databases so it is easier for departments to set it up and connect it to the GOV.UK Verify hub.

Improving the completion rate

To improve the proportion of visits that result in the creation or reuse of a verified account with a certified company, we’ve:

  • run an A/B test to determine the effect of logos on the initial information pages; the test revealed that users are more likely to follow through with verifying their identity with a certified company when they are given information about these companies early in the process
  • made improvements to the way users can provide feedback and ask questions
  • started an A/B test to explore how to provide users with relevant information about certified companies.

Improving and maintaining GOV.UK Verify

We want to continue to improve the way we run the GOV.UK Verify federation and operate the live service effectively. To continue to keep GOV.UK Verify available and secure we’ve:

  • removed lots of old, unused code which reduces the time needed to release updates
  • improved the reliability of our system monitoring dashboards

Things we plan to do next

In the coming 2 to 3 weeks we expect to:

  • run A/B tests on the best way to ask users about the types of documents they have to use for verifying their identity
  • improve our security monitoring capabilities to defend against new types of attacks
  • further automate and expedite our release process so we can make improvements and respond to issues more quickly
  • continue recruiting new members for the technical delivery team - we’re looking for web ops engineers, developers and more! If you’re interested in joining us at GDS, check out our current vacancies.

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