Morten Winther

Seamless log-in & user administration

Improving the interactions with the Danish public sector for Danish business users.


  • Client

    Danish Agency of Digitisation

  • Year

    2016 – 2017

  • My role

    Team lead · UX designer

Denmark is one of the most digitized countries in the world. Danish businesses use a variety of public IT systems to report information and to request reimbursements from federal authorities. However, the IT systems behind these interactions are fragmented and governed in individual silos. I worked with the Danish Agency of Digitisation to create seamless and coherent user experiences.

The challenge & outcome

The purpose was to identify pain points in the current systems and conceptualize how to solve these in the next generation of the public IT infrastructure. Through iterative processes, the concepts were refined, technologically validated, and user tested. The outcome was a set of UX principles as well as essential criteria and high-level concepts for the next generation of the infrastructure components.

My role

I was the lead on four projects from October 2016 to July 2017 for the Danish Agency for Digitisation and Danish Business Authority. I was responsible for planning the processes and their activities from user interviews to stakeholder involvement. I was also in charge of the concept development, prototyping, and user evaluation. Furthermore, I did the management presentations and wrote the final reports.

"Morten is the best UXer I have ever met, and I have met quite a few. Like the best of his colleagues, his commitment to the needs of the users is unfailing, but what makes Morten stand out, is the quality of his suggestions. His solutions are a perfect mix of creativity and a sense of what is realistic, in terms of cost and what is technically possible."

Carsten Ingerslev, Head of department, Danish Business Authority

  • 01 Process
  • 02 User insights
  • 03 Improved log-in
  • 04 Reframing "Terms and conditions"

01Concept refinement
through iterative processes

Main activities in the project

  • Continuous user involvement, research, and testing: Interviews, observations and "support eavesdropping".
  • Empathy-driven narratives about current user pains.
  • Cross-disciplinary co-creation workshops (business, IT, legal).
  • Iterative concept development, wireframing and prototyping.
  • Test and concept refinements
  • Management presentations and decision proposals.

02Designing for business users:
It's still people in front of the screen

Companies are often categorized based on business demographics (number of employees, turnover, corporate setup, etc.). This usually determines what rules apply to a specific company.

However, I'm my work I continuously insisted on also focusing on the actual person sitting in front of the screen. While the flow, rules, and required data are determined by the company demographics, the user experience of interacting with the solution is influenced by more subtle dynamics too. For instance, the level of IT experience, how people feel about their colleagues, or how accessible the CEO is to provide a necessary signature all impacts the perceived ease and interaction with the systems.

This was the basis for a workshop where we identified three key parameters for for our user segmentation work in the project. These guided us throughout the project to recruit relevant users for interviews and testing.

User research

To understand the users' current challenges and pain points, we used different qualitative methods: Interviews with people who administer system users, observation of current use, and eavesdropping with support staff.

Below are the most important insights from the research.
Login is too complicated
"Why can't [log in] be more like online banking. It's so frustrating that something that should be simple just isn't working."
Systems are not coherent in wording, patterns, nor design
Wording is too technical
Too many errors disrupt tasks
User administration is too cumbersome
The flows are not fully digital
To complete the flow in the current version, some users have to print and physically sign documents.

03Optimizing log-in
and rethinking user profiles

One of the major issues in the current version is the lack of flexibility in user profiles. As a business owner of a small business, it might be useful to use the same login credentials that it used as a citizen, whereas larger organizations may require all employees to use a company profile.

The wording and interfaces in the current infrastructure are highly technical and are hard to understand for most people. To deal with this, I created a new model for the relationship between a person and her user profiles.

For example, Susanne might have login credentials as a Danish citizen, a volunteer for the girl scouts, and as a super administrator for a large corporation. Technically, each of these profiles is separate entities, but for Susanne they are all related to different aspects of her life.

For the accountant, John, who works for multiple companies, a separate profile is created for each business. In the current system, this requires John to log-out and log-in each time he switches between companies. But from his perspective, he never changes user (he is always the accountant), merely administering different of his clients.

Easier access – same level of security

The new model – in combination with the upcoming new infrastructure goal architecture – allow much more flexibility in changing between different profiles. The current systems are created as if profiles exist in isolation, whereas the new model proposes to support work flows based on people's actual behaviors and needs.
A coherent login module should be used across all publis portals.
Naturally, login should work flawlessly on mobile.
A user can choose between relevant profiles specific to the given portal.

04From "terms and conditions"
to digital configuration

When you start a new company in Denmark, you need to accept the terms and conditions of the public IT systems. For various reasons, this is not part of the company registration flow. Today, a large number of new companies do not give their consent, because it's not a priority for a new business and because the flow is challenging.

To solve this, I focused on the value for a company to actually do this. Because other than giving their consent, they also appoint an administrator for system users, set notification settings, and set up their digital public mail account. Instead, of focusing on the consent, I convinced the Danish Agency of Digitisation to highlight the benefits for new companies to go through the flow.

A flow for one person or multiple actors

In smaller companies, the owner will naturally be the one to go through the flow. But for larger, international corporations multiple people are often responsible for different parts of the business. The CEO can sign and give consent on behalf of the company, while an employee might be responsible for user administration, while a third person is in charge of the company's digital mail account.

As such, it is important that the flow can work for multiple scenarios and that it is adjusted depending on the given case.
The flow chart above shows how different scenarios should be solved in the solution. It also indicated which actors are involved and which data bases it draws upon to tailor the flow the situation.

The Danish Agency of Digitisation is now finishing the tenders for the next generation of the infrastructure components. Within a few years, I hope to see most of the principles and concepts integrated in the new solutions.

Read more about the tenders here