As age 30 began arriving at break neck speed, I thought it was time to finally learn how to drive. My mission was simple- learn how to drive. While the physical act of doing so was difficult enough, I didn't anticipate all the other hurdles I had to cross. At the end of it, my experience has become perfect fodder for a UX case study.
Study for and take written test
Obtain learners permit
Get behind-the-wheel driving lessons
Practice at odd hours of the day
Try not to let the stress make you cry like a baby
Get permanent license
Enjoy new found freedom!
I genuinely thought that my biggest struggle was going to be learning how to operate a car. While it did retain the number one spot, several other random things made themselves very frustrating to accomplish. Here are some key pain points at different stages of my journey to becoming a driver:
Because the DPS is notorious for lines and for being generally stressful, I decided to take an online course. The course also provided the final written test and certificate/paperwork for obtaining a learners permit. This part of my journey was fairly painless, except a minor annoyance related to the online course. I spent a significant amount of time away from the course app in between any two study sessions. Because of this, I rarely remembered my login details.
The general anguish that stems from interacting with DPS in any form - physically or digitally - found a solid basis at this point.
Getting behind the wheel of a car for the first time, till date, remains the most stressful thing I've ever done. While the pain points associated with physically driving are understandable and resolve with practice, the process of getting behind the wheel had some unexpected challenges.
After jumping through a lot of unexpected hoops and thorough behind-the-wheel lessons, I was ready for the road test. But, a final few road blocks were in the way:
This 6 week journey has been interesting, to say the least. So much stress, so many happy moments, and SO. MUCH. FREEDOM!
But, there is one tool/part/aspect - call it what you may - of this journey that was a common and obvious pain point most times- the DPS website. It is evident that the website is poorly organized, with overlapping, and often contradicting information. If the website was clearer and better organized, user frustration and chances of failure could be reduced greatly.