Morten Winther

Reinventing the letter

Designing a vision for the digital interactions between citizens and the Danish public sector.

Public sector communication is primarily based on letters, forms, and receipts. But what are the options for creating more interactive and user-friendly communication through digital channels?

The challenge

Today, the communication between citizens and public Denmark happens on the digital platform called Digital Post. Here, civic authorities can send information to people securely and digital. However, this information is primarily sent as flat .pdf-versions of a physical letter that would previously have been sent by regular mail. In other words, the communication is not optimized for a digital context and does not exploit the digital possibilities for interactivity, dynamics, and responsiveness.

My role

Together with Maria Køhnke, I created an ambitious vision and concepts for rethinking the end-to-end communication. Together with Maria, I executed the creative process with user involvement, stakeholder interviews, and workshops, deconstruction, and analysis of existing letters as well as concept development. We developed a proposal for a new communication paradigm between the public sector and Danish citizens.

"Morten is a true hybrid of professional competencies: A very inventive, methodically skilled, and analytically strong UX advisor with an impressive flair for visual design. On top of that, he has an extensive understanding of technology. In Morten, you have a creative person who can drive almost all aspects of digital product development as well as a person who loves to go thoroughly in depth with even small details."

Maria Køhnke, former Director of UX and Creative Strategy, Charlie Tango

  • 01 Process
  • 02 User involvement
  • 03 Letters, redesigned
  • 04 Kill the letter

01Project process

Main activities in the project

  • Holistic service design, user journey mapping based on user research.
  • Deconstruction of 600+ existing letters.
  • Mapping of relevant IT systems.
  • Concept development for short-term improvement.
  • Concept visions for future communication strategy.
  • Mangement presentations for client and other relevant stakeholders.

02User involvement:
Understanding the letters
as part of a journey

We had a holistic approach to the project and wanted to understand not just the letters in isolation but as part of a larger communication context. To gain a better understanding of the user perspective, we held six co-creation sessions each with 3-4 people. In these sessions, we mapped each of the participants journey related to business domain just as they were asked to critique specific letters.

03Deconstructing letters
to redesign structures and content.

One part of the project focused on improving the letters in the existing platform landscape. This meant creating concepts for responsive, interactive letters. To do this, we analyzed more than 600 letters, which we divided into overall categories. We then deconstructed a sample of these letters to get a sense of the different types of content blocks

Design iterations.

To generate concepts, we sketched and prototyped on a series of ideas. We then improved on these through internal crit session, user testing, and technical validation. We adjusted the concepts in order to propose feasible solutions that would integrate well into the existing IT platforms.

04Kill the letter.
Design for flexible interactions!

Beyond concepts that could be quickly implemented, we completely re-envisioned the communication between citizens and the public sector. o make their communication truly digital, we recommended them to rethink their entire platform landscape and reconsider which content should be distributed where. Inspired by omnichannel strategies, we wanted them to think in platform-independent communication, where data and information can be dynamically presented across platforms.