This article was originally published on the website of Australian Government’s Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources
The Behavioral Economics Team of the Australian Government (BETA) from the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C) are using behavioral insights to improve government forms. Behavioral insights apply the knowledge gained from understanding human behavior and decision-making to programs or policy questions.
The BETA team hosted a Form-a-Palooza event where they tried to complete all Australian government forms, that were often incorrectly completed or left incomplete, to identify “friction points” and work out what could be improved. After identifying common patterns, they developed the WISER Framework to improve government forms.
The WISER framework acronym stands for:
- Who – Understanding your clients and process.
- Introduction – Offering clear instructions and highlighting key info.
- Structure – Structuring the form simply and guiding people through it.
- Expression – Writing for clients, not government, using plain language not jargon.
- Repeat – Testing and iterating.
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