Rebuilding Cybersecurity: The Design System Overhaul

Transforming Managed Security Services and Third Party Risk with a User-Centered Approach

William Man
3 min readFeb 10, 2023

Disclaimer: Some information, including the client’s name, has been redacted due to Non-Disclosure Agreements.

This study showcases the redesign of the client portals, with a focus on effective data visualization and meeting 508 Compliance standards. The client’s business units, Third Party Risk (3PR) and Managed Security Services (MSS), needed an overhaul in design to provide a consistent visual language and user experience.

The design process involved research and strategy to understand the client’s users and create meaningful dashboards that could effectively communicate complex data.

User Research

To create the best experience for users, I began by researching the different user types. After numerous strategy meetings and speaking directly with users, we were able to narrow down 18 unique personas. However, through finding commonality between these personas, we were able to identify three main user types with similar characteristics, goals, and pain points. This allowed us to work more efficiently and create meaningful dashboards that effectively communicated complex data.

Design System

One of the key takeaways from this project was the application of a highly detailed style design system. This system provided consistency across all business units and helped make sure that the new design was aligned with the client’s goals and accessible to all users.

Data Visualization

The focus of the redesign was to provide clear and effective data visualizations for users. With the three main personas in mind, we were able to create meaningful dashboards that could effectively communicate complex data in a simple and understandable way. The use of data visualization helped users make informed decisions quickly, and the design system made sure that all visualizations were consistent and aligned with the client’s goals.

As just a snapshot of the many data visualization components found in the design system across their portal experiences.

508 Compliance

Partway through the project, the client decided to take on some federal clients, which meant that all design components in the design system and live portals needed to meet 508 Compliance. As the design lead but also in charge of execution, I had to make sure that the entire design system was accessible.

I communicated realistic expectations and successfully rolled out changes to the design system in stages. In two months, we were able to make the entire system 508 compliant, without sacrificing the design and user experience.


This project showcases the power of good design practice in accessibility design and data visualization. By understanding the client’s users and creating a highly detailed style design system, we were able to provide a consistent and accessible user experience.

The focus on data visualization helped users make informed decisions quickly, and the successful overhaul of the entire design system to meet 508 Compliance standards was a monumental task that was achieved in a short amount of time.