We’re hurtling through the beta phase of the essex.gov.uk project, and we’d like to keep you up to speed with what we’re doing. With that in mind, we’re taking the leap into weeknotes. We’ll start by publishing them here and see how we get on. Feel free to get in touch if you’re interested in something that we’ve mentioned, we're firstname.lastname@example.org.
Magda and Ben have been working through a mountain of interviews with 22 users, including social workers, front desk advisers, community agents and carers. They’ve synthesised this so they can analyse it.
It's created a pretty amazing post-it tapestry on the walls of C-block, so catch it while you can.
They’ve also been making plans for the accessibility audit and associated testing. Testing the site with people who have accessibility needs is crucial before going live so we can pick up any issues or gaps.
Helen’s been busy this week (no shock there), working with Stockport’s Product Manager on how we can share research and development meaningfully in the future. Collaborating is tough, but there’s no more rigorous way of testing your methods than sharing them.
Helen’s also been focusing on accessibility. We’ve enlisted a specialist agency to make sure that all of our web and apps products meet the tests set out in the new legislation. By 2020, all websites, apps and documents, like PDFs, will have to comply. It’s a massive task, and we’re keen to get the message out!
It’s been a really exciting week in Content. On Wednesday we got our first permanent content designer, Caroline. As well as getting to grips with essex.gov.uk and its microsites, Caroline A’s been given the not insignificant task of redesigning our Environment and Planning pages.
There will be more new arrivals next week, as Essex’s own Hannah Chan joins us.
Collette has been getting her teeth into her new role as Content Lead, setting out clear content standards to be applied across the council in our new content strategy. This will help deliver clear, concise and consistent content to all of our residents.
Sheila spent the early part of the week diving headlong into three weeks’ worth of emails that had built up while she was on holiday in Cambodia and the Philippines. She also managed to find time to talk the Education service through the beta pages she’s redesigned.
Caroline M's been working on the new Leisure, Culture and Heritage section and researching Contact Us pages.
I’ve mainly been focused on some new pages about Special Guardianship Orders and looking at some of the other children’s social content. I’ve also been having a little look at how various people do week notes.
Matt’s been looking at the funding for the project in the future, as well as doing some detailed planning for go-live. He’s also been working really closely with colleagues in Tech Services to make sure they’re kept up to date with our progress.
This is all quite heavy duty project stuff, so I think you’ll agree he’s earned his week off in Cromer next week.
Martin’s been working on some of our apps. This is pretty tricky work. Imagine multiple years of Christmas lights and decorations thrown into various boxes into the attic, all jumbled into their own unique knots.
There’s still a way to go to get these applications fully functioning, but we’re on-track and excitement is building.
It's great to have a new joiner, but it was also pretty good having an impromptu picture day courtesy of Nic Ward. You can look forward to seeing the moody, monochrome goodness very soon.