Show and tell notes: 12th Sept

We had a break from show and tells over the summer and this was the first one of the new ‘term’. Good to see you all!

While people have been on their holidays, the service design team have been beavering away, and Collette Parnell kicked off with a brief overview of the work the service design team has been doing on the alpha project over the summer.

Alpha progress

The team created an alpha prototype (using the GOV.UK prototype kit) to test design patterns, usability and adult social care content.

The prototype was then iterated based on user feedback from 5 rounds of testing, including mobile testing. There is still further testing to be carried out on the prototype over the coming weeks, specifically focusing on the homepage.

Moving into beta

Collette then talked about the work taking place to prepare for the beta phase of the project. This includes:

  • Tech Services and the Service Design team working together to complete a technical discovery, looking at sharing open source code, options for search, and platform security
  • Planning how we tackle content, including information architecture, content types and developing a content migration plan
  • What we need to be aware of during the project, such as booking systems, forms, search options and CRM integration

Looking sideways - Why we’re trying to reuse, not reinvent

Nic Ward then moved onto taking a broader view of our work over the last 6 months, highlighting one of the principles - reuse, don’t reinvent - for how we work in the Service Design team, and gave some examples for how we’re trying to ‘look sideways’ and learn from others.

This includes the Government Digital Service Manual and Service Standards, the Local Digital Declaration, the Local Gov Digital peer network and recent visits to Hackney and Stockport to look at the website platform that they have created.

Some of the key benefits of collaboration are:

  • We can learn from the work that others are doing, many of the fundamentals for effective digital services have already been proven so there’s no need to reinvent the wheel
  • Digital solutions can be expensive to develop, and with others can help us to scale up and deliver more quickly
  • Other organisations have different approaches and levels of resourcing, and many are further along the journey – however there is always value in sharing both ways

Retro on the retro

Since we knew there’d be a pause over the summer, we were keen to ask people at the last session for their feedback.

Nic went through some of the feedback we received when we did a rapid retrospective at our last show and tell session. We are considering how to include these suggestions in our future sessions.

We’ve also introduced a quick Plus/Delta activity which we’ll use to collect feedback at future show and tells - to keep the learning going.

Look forward to seeing many more of you at the next show and tell on 26 September. The topic will be User Research.

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