Welcome to NYC’s Alpha Labs

Alpha is our experiment in designing with you, the public

Right now, designing websites for NYC’s government is a long, complicated, expensive process. New Yorkers see the website for the first time after we’ve spent a lot of time and money. Once the website goes “live,” we don’t ask residents what they think of it or how we can keep improving it.

With Alpha, we’re experimenting with building a website in front of you, and asking for your feedback as we go. We’re not replacing nyc.gov, but we want to see what we can learn to make it better, and to make every website we build better.

We want to start a conversation with you, about what you want to see on our websites, what works for you, and what you find confusing.

We’re starting with three of the most searched services on nyc.gov: Find a Job, Pay a Parking Ticket, and Get an IDNYC. These three services are important to New Yorkers, so they’re important to us.

The current webpages for these services can feel overwhelming and complicated to some New Yorkers. Alpha is our first stab at designing a easier way for you to find these services. We created a simple drop-down search to help you find a job in City government, an interactive map for people who want to apply for an IDNYC, and a quick button to help you pay your parking ticket.

We’ve also taken what we think is the most important information about each service and written it in the clearest way we could. But this is just the first step. As we learn more from Alpha, and from you, we can change how we design these pages to come up with something even simpler.

We want to find out the most effective way to help you with these requests online. Help us by exploring NYCalpha and letting us know what you think.

Written by Rebecca Tinkelman, Digital Director at the New York City Mayor’s Office of Digital Strategy.

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