Know Your Users


What It Is

People and businesses use state government services to help them get something done (e.g., obtain a license for their profession, register the name of their new business, renew their driver’s license).

"User needs" are the needs that a user has of a service, with that service providing the right outcome for them.

Why It's Important

Your users' success = your success!

  • Improved customer engagement when digital services are easy to use by all, reliable and predictable—and meet Coloradan’s needs, engagement in state services improves. 
  • Reduce costs by improved self-service, reducing in-person touchpoints, reducing call center volume, reduce duplication of work across divisions and agencies. 

How to Do It

  1. Identify all possible user groups with your team.
    • Ask each team member to make a list of all the possible categories of people who might be a user of your product. Have them do this individually then compare notes as a team. The most popular answers will be your base categories.
  2. Segment the categories into useful groups within the context of your product.
    • Examples include profession, knowledge level, technical ability.
  3. Write the name of each type of user on a sticky note. This is your User Group.
    • Examples include business owner, thought-leader, researcher, DIYer.
  4. Evaluate your users and categories, add or subtract User Group as needed
  5. Assign attributes to each User Group. Use multicolored post-it notes and separate the attributes into the following categories.
    • Wants/needs: responsibilities and/or goals- “I have to…”, “I want to…”, “I need to…”
    • Pain points: assign specific difficulties: “I find __ to be hard”, “I get irritated when….”
    • Design essentials: What does this user need from the product in order for them to feel satisfied? Be specific.
  6. Once you’ve written out your attributes assign them to each User Group as you think they would apply to a user within that category.
  7. Prioritize the User Groups in the context of the business goals that they align with. 
  8. Validate your work with further customer research including interviews, usability testing, and observation.