At a glance

6 to 8 weeks
Federal government
Design & user research
Open design
User needs, Agile delivery, Design, Open standards & common platforms, Open source, Accessibility

CASA’s challenge

As part of CASA’s website redevelopment CASA was moving from GovCMS Drupal 7 to GovCMS Drupal 8/9 and wanted to use the opportunity to uplift its digital brand and improve the user experience with a refreshed design.  CASA’s own internal team went a long way in imagining the new site but needed a web partner to create highly polished designs, along with interactive components and a digital style guide. 

CASA’s transformation

Through our design partners Oliver Grace, we delivered high-fidelity designs that were user-tested and validated, ensuring a strong focus on both usability and brand appeal. The final designs could then be leveraged by CASA’s Drupal developers to build the new site on GovCMS D8/9. 

The outcomes

  • High quality, user-centric designs and components, validated through user testing

  • A component library of assets to support the developers for site build

  • Validated, user-tested components that can be fed into Salsa’s new, open source GovCMS D9 design system: Civic Theme

CASA’s challenge — an outdated design on an end-of-life platform

With Drupal 7 nearing its end-of-life, CASA started the process of re-platforming to GovCMS D8/9 as well as embarking on a full website content and design redevelopment.

While CASA’s project UX designer had started work on the design process, creating initial mid-fidelity wireframes, they were unable to complete the design prior to leaving the agency. CASA had an immediate need for final designs and was on a critical path, requiring new UI concepts and all high-fidelity designs for the outstanding pages and features.

To support any new design decisions, we included a final round of qualitative user testing to ensure the final output met the same success as CASA’s original testing.

CASA’s transformation — validated, confident, and visually appealing

Salsa invited our design partners, Oliver Grace, to team up and deliver user research and final website designs.  The experience designer on the project was Adam Walton, a former Salsarian and government design aficionado who’d recently taken on a full-time role at Oliver Grace.

Oliver Grace is a creative studio that brings purposeful ideas to life through engaging and meaningful design. Delivering impactful outcomes for organisations with purpose, their mission is clear and simple: design for good.

We kicked off by reviewing the existing wireframes that formed the foundations of the new site design, followed by creating additional wireframes to fill in some of the unknown scenarios. 

User testing

Qualitative user testing was carried out on both high-fidelity, branded concepts and mid-fidelity designs, all produced in Figma.  The one-on-one interviews were conducted with a diverse set of five CASA website users.  The user testing covered:

  • A/B testing (testing two different versions) of the homepage to compare appeal, tone-of-voice and navigation experience

  • Navigating into deeper levels of the site — from the landing and category pages, down to the content pages

  • Submitting an enquiry via the contact page

  • Filtering via search results

  • Brand awareness and appeal of a campaign site

Figma file showing user pathways through the prototype

Participants were asked a series of open-ended questions, such as:

  • How’s your experience with the main menu?

  • How does a clean, white page compare with one that shows a mix of dark and light sections, e.g. a darker main menu and news section? (see image below)

  • Do you find that real photography and illustrations add to the design’s appeal or detract from it?

  • Do you still know where you are at this point?

  • Is it clear what the different colours mean between these different areas of the site?

  • If you could change one thing about what you just saw, what would it be?

Light vs dark design concepts

Following user testing the feedback was consolidated into common patterns, prioritised, and then actioned during the final design rollout within Figma. The completed mobile and desktop designs were packaged along with a digital style guide and a component library of assets to support CASA’s developers in the frontend build of the site, and to provide a clearer direction for CASA’s brand uplift.

CASA is currently in the process of developing the new-and-improved site, and we’ve remained on-hand to consult with CASA developers to ensure smooth implementation of the final designs.

“Salsa and Oliver Grace spent time with us discussing our requirements and coming to an understanding of our vision for the new website. They provided high fidelity design files for selected views and components, which have allowed us to complete wireframes for the remaining views and progress swiftly with building the new website. The report and recommendations provided following the user testing gives us additional evidence base. The digital style guide and component library that they delivered is excellent and is one of the most comprehensive our developers have seen.”

Amanda Palmer
Stakeholder Communications Manager
Engagement, Communication and Safety Education Branch

The outcomes — improved user experience

  • A high-fidelity, interactive prototype of new designs and components

  • High quality, user-centric designs and components, validated through user testing

  • A digital style guide to support the direction of the new CASA brand

  • A component library of assets to support the developers for site build

  • Validated, user-tested components that can be fed into Salsa’s new, open source GovCMS D9 design system: Civic Theme

About CASA

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is the Australian Government’s regulatory authority for civil aviation.