I was a Product Design Intern at Ontario Digital Service, a transformative government initiative reshaping the delivery of public services through digital innovation and accessibility.

I co-designed and launched an online renewal process for driver's licences, health cards, and photo cards with 5 million annual users.


Product design
User research
Developer handoff

1 lab leader
1 lead designer
1 product designer
1 content designer
2 developers

Sep - Oct 2019
(5 weekly sprints)

Defining the Problem

On the existing ServiceOntario online renewal platform, there were customer feedback forms. We categorized over 1,600 submissions to identify prominent complaints, resulting in the diagnosis of three major issues:


Difficult to find the appropriate service

Users found it difficult to renew the appropriate service due to the system's limitations, which required simultaneous renewal of both driver's license and health card, and made it challenging to find the option to renew only the driver's license if the initial link was not clicked correctly.


Confusing error messaging

Users expressed frustration with the lack of explanation provided when their renewal was denied, stating that they were not given a reason or indication of ineligibility after entering their information.


Redundant and convoluted text and questions

Users found it frustrating to repeatedly enter their name and address despite indicating there had been no changes.

The Problem

We have observed that the ServiceOntario online renewal flows are not meeting user needs, which is causing low completion rates, negative user feedback, inclusion concerns, and low uptake on digital services.

How might we design a digital renewal transaction flow that promotes usability and inclusion by reducing time on task and increasing positive feedback on eligibility?

Creating Our Concept


Our team individually sketched user flows and interfaces in five-minute brainstorming sessions and presented our designs to the group.


We then combined the strengths of our ideas into a final user flow that represented our team’s vision of the redesigned renewal service’s golden path.

Low Fidelity Prototype

With our lead designer, my fellow product designer and I then created a low-fidelity Balsamiq prototype that simulated this ideated flow.

Testing with the Public

Equipped with a low-fidelity prototype of our redesigned renewal platform, my co-designers and I traveled to downtown Toronto to conduct weekly guerilla user testing at the busiest ServiceOntario centre. Over the span of three weeks, I facilitated 23 15-minute interviews.

Content is Key

A dominant complaint about our designs was a lack of clarity in its content. With a month of experience in the problem space, our team likely had become so familiar with government terminology that we had not considered how confusing its use would be to our user base.

We partnered with a content designer to implement users' feedback as we iterated our designs from low to high fidelity:

Remove ambiguous language



Include next steps after errors



Describe complex terminology



Optimizing for Mobile

Through testing, we also discovered a crucial oversight in our initial design approach. Our team had overlooked the limitations of phone screens while designing, focusing instead on complete wireframes. However, user feedback on smaller screens highlighted the need for revisions to ensure a seamless mobile user experience.

To rectify this issue, we implemented the following design changes:

Keep essentials above the fold



Surface helpful information first



The Reimagined Experience

Here's some highlights of our reimagined renewal process. View our interactive Figma prototype.

No more waiting in line. Renew any card from anywhere with our unified renewal platform.


Simplified requirements let users know what they'll need on hand at a glance.

Card selection

No more hunting for the right renewal website for each of your cards. Choose which ones you want to renew, and we'll optimize the process for you.


Get guided step-by-step to check that you're able to renew online. If you're unable to, we'll recommend a way to continue.

Card input

Enter your cards' information, with the aid of examples and hint images to help you locate them. Even if you forget something, we'll highlight how to fix it.


Want to be reminded when it's time to renew again? We'll email, text, or call you, whatever's convenient for you.


Check that all of your information is correct. If you've made a mistake, you can edit it on the same page.


You've renewed your cards! We've emailed you with confirmation and next steps, so you can confidently continue with your day.

The Launch

Using our Figma prototype, we collaborated with our in-lab developers to develop an interactive webapp prototype. We summarized our research and handed off our prototypes to the executives of the Ministry of Transportation and Ministry of Health.

"Jayden understands complex nuances quickly and thinks in a user-centric way. He is excellent at trying something, getting valuable input from real users, iterating, and documenting findings. Beyond great results, it's a pleasure to work and collaborate with him. He's a quick study and also a collaborative partner with subject matter experts."

Tamara Dobson, Ministry of Transportation product owner

Our findings proved instrumental in the newest iteration of Ontario's online driver's licence and health card renewal platform, which launched in October 2021. Here are some metrics from the launch:

Online renewal rates increased by 8%

Customer complaints decreased by 17%

Time to renewal completion decreased by 12%

(actual values omitted for confidentiality reasons)

Learnings and Reflections


Talk to users directly

No matter how confident I felt in my assumptions about the problem space, that's all they were - assumptions. This project reinforced my belief in the importance of user feedback to ensure that our prototype met real-world expectations and needs.


Be comfortable with being uncomfortable

Despite my extroversion, I remember how uncomfortable I was during our first guerilla user testing session. However, once I approached that first stranger and successfully conducted an interview, I recognized the situation as an opportunity to learn. While it will be frightening, I hope to approach future situations with a similar eagerness to explore.


Challenge my capabilities

When our team was told that we had a week to create a prototype with Balsamiq, an application that I had never used before, I knew that I was up for a challenge. After experiencing rapid growth in my skillset as a result of this short time frame, I have recognized that learning thrives in difficulty.

Working in the Ontario Digital Service Kitchener-Waterloo Lab was an unforgettable experience. Not only did projects such as this allow me to exponentially grow my skillset through exposure to unique, enterprise-level opportunities, but this small but mighty team of six taught me how to enjoy every second of it!

Next project

Jayden Hsiao - Designer & Developer