California DMV Redesign

SPRING 2019 


California Department of Vehicles provides online appointment booking as the precursor for the office visit. Their online booking has helped reduced wait time at the office by 3 hours. However, there is still friction in the online experience that leads to high dropout rate. The redesign strives to optimize the experience to accommodate for inperson arrival and improving appointment completion rate.

Role - Designer

Timeline - 4 weeks


  • User wants to renew one item Real ID

  • User commits to earliest available date and time at the nearest DMV

  • DMV Official needs to retain all the information for each appointment

  • Mobile web browser only


Target users - English speaking CA residence

Device -  Mobile only


The main task was to reconfigure dense information into clear, logical instructions with the goal of increasing application turnin.


Locating the closest DMV results in 90% users exiting to Google Map,provided that there’s a map feature within the site and 58 cities in California to scroll through.



Locating Nearest DMV Office

The purpose of Items and Reason for Visit are unclear. Users are confused by number of items and reason for visit despite how the two are dependent upon another



Purpose of Items & Reason for Visit

The search for time and date should be displayed before retrieving availability.
I learnt from the DMV official that they only show 3 availability as the system automatically prioritizes on the earliest opening. This field lacked hierarchy, layout and proved difficult for scanning.



Available Time & Location



Select Appointment Type



After a/b testing, I settled on expandable list and improved visibility by utilizing shade overlay to distinguish between item itself and item description.

Declutter dense information to allow scanning for primary tasks without having to read through descriptive details. Yet, users can hover on the expandable list to learn more.


Span Search Experience


  1. Increase accessibility of search by spanning the search bar horizontally and positioning search bar above the automated results


  2. Provide distance information within search to help users make decisions without having to switch to Google Map


  3. Utilize Google's place autocomplete function to eliminate the need to fully type out the city, thereby saving time, minimizing the amount of typing, and ensuring accurate results


  4. Alternatively, select from an array of default chips of the earliest date and time. 12/12 users found the chips as giving viable, useful suggestion so they won’t have to go through more tedious flow.


Browse Date and Time

Pair date and time so users can simultaneously browse available time and corresponding date. This eliminates the need for users to input date and time separately, and reduces user effort of exiting to their personal calendar.


Getting Ready for the Visit

I utilized layout to increase text legibility. The accommodation is kept intact as this was essential to the DMV Officials to keep a record.



Every user complained about text quantity and lack of visual comfort. I separated primary information (submitted online appointment detail) from new, secondary information (physical DMV appointment to-do) to highlight upcoming user tasks.


Narrow Scopes and 

Account for Edge Cases

Due to time constraint, the project scope has been designated to identifying a very specific group of user and getting the users to accomplish the main task. I didn't account for edge cases for candidates of different demographics and potential error states. Next time, I would dedicate my project to encompass and showcase how the DMV will resolve several edge cases and reducing the number of assumptions put forward.

Transition from Online

to Inperson Experiences

In-person government visit is notoriously known to be mundane and frustratingly long. After redesigning the online experience, I believe that a well designed booking experience should accommodate for the needs of in-person appointment -both on the candidate and the DMV official end. Although the project focused on achieving higher completion rate, but I am to determine several key metrics in the future for how the online experience in fact help enhanced in-person appointment such as reducing wait time and appointment information accuracy.


Excellent overall design. Clear and clean visuals, design choices supported by data that should lead to increased success. Calendar design in particular is elegant, as is the review detail screen. Seems like you designed to the insights you got.