Analysis of a Railway Reservation Form

Assignment for a course on Visual Human Factors/ Ergonomics by Dr Prabir Mukhopadhyaya


How might we redesign the Railway Reservation/ Cancellation Requisition Form in such a way that a user can fill it easily and information be retrieved from the form easily?


To successfully analyse the Railway form from a user's POV, I followed the 3 principles of designing for visible language.

1. Organise

2. Economise

3. Communicate 






To understand how the 'person behind the window' enters information into the computer, I visited the Jabalpur Railway Station and asked the employee. 


1. The Railway clerk has to enter the details in the following order: 

a. Train no.

b. Date

c. Class

d. No. of passengers

e. From & to

f. *Mode of payment*

g. Passengers name with gender, age (First-person becomes the applicant)

h. *SEES availability and asks if he/ she should book*

i. Type of concession

j. Print

k. The amount is told and displayed

l. Clerk writes the sr. no. of requisition, PNR, amount collected, seat number and signs the form.

[Looks into the computer and writes]

What can be done?

The order of information is similar to the form, the scanning pattern can be worked upon. The breaks( where the clerk has to ask a question) are to be considered. ‘For official use only’ should be in a quadrant where he can write easily.

2. What happens to the form after the ticket is booked?

Forms are stored for 6 months or stated otherwise by the court. The address is the only information that is peculiar to the form. The address is not entered into the computer system.