A series of steps (“flow”) that users complete for a specific task. It is a single flow completed similarly by all users for a specific action. Ex. Sign Up. Task flows have a singular flow, they don’t branch out.

One of the different diagrams which map out the structure, hierarchy, organization, and relationships across content and features of our designs.

So that people who use the design (e.g. a product, service, experience) can fluidly navigate through the design to accomplish their desired goals.

Task flows are similar to user flows, except they’re generally linear without multiple branches or paths. E.g., all users would follow the same steps to complete that specific action, such as creating an account or going through a checkout process.

Task flows tend to be linear, showing the high-level steps that a person would take to get to a specific goal or end point. Task flows tend not to branch out with options or decision points, tend to be linear and sequential, and are generally meant to be simple, rather than complex.

To build a desirable task flow you need to understand all the different aspects around the pain-point, challenge you want to solve. The practice of researching and setting up user personas involves understanding user needs, motivations, goals, and constraints and allows us to empathize with the way users solve problems. In their analysis, design teams sometimes focus on the who and how, but forget the why. To understand the why, explore questions like:

  • Who is the user (demographics, roles, skills/knowledge level)?
  • What motivates the user to perform each task?
  • What are the user’s end goals?
  • What user-needs are met by completing a task?
  • What obstacles might a user face while completing a task?
  • Are there any usage constraints to consider?


Further Readings,

More Readings,

Usability Testing refers to evaluating a product or service by testing it with representative users. Typically, during a test, participants will try to complete typical tasks while observers watch, listen and takes notes.  The goal is to identify an...

Wizard of Oz prototyping. Wizard of Oz prototyping (WOZ prototyping) is a design methodology used in rapid product development to improve the user experience (UX). WOZ prototyping requires developers to create a rudimentary model of the completed pro...

Human-centered design (HCD) is a design and management framework that develops solutions to problems by involving the human perspective in all steps of the problem-solving process. Human involvement typically takes place in observing the problem with...

Task analysis is the analysis of how a task is accomplished, including a detailed description of both manual and mental activities, task and element durations, task frequency, task allocation, task complexity, environmental conditions, necessary clot...

Reporting and analyzing user queries submitted as search criteria on a site Analyzing words and phrases entered into a search provides insight into what people are looking for in order to evaluate how well content meets those needs. Site Se...

The process of using spatial and environmental information to navigate to a destination. Whether navigating a college campus, the wilds of a forest, or a Web site, the basic process of wayfinding involves the same four stages: Orientation, Route...