Sprint Notes #64

Local Digital
Local Digital
Published in
7 min readJun 7

17 May to 31 May

Welcome to Sprint Notes #64! Stay up to date with the latest advancements from our Round 6 projects and Continuous Funding projects. Additionally, you can hear our latest news and share your thoughts on Sprint Notes.

News from Local Digital

An update on the Local Digital Declaration discovery project

We’re now into Sprint 4 of the discovery project to explore what’s next for the Local Digital Declaration.

Since our last update, we’ve continued to refine the experience map, held an internal workshop to synthesise the findings from our user research, and begun creating user personas.

Through the course of this project, we’ve seen the Declaration operate on multiple levels: as a piece of content, as a service and as a strategic tool. We’re already seeing opportunities for improvement emerging across all three of these areas, and this sprint we are holding a second internal workshop to prioritise what we want to tackle next.

This sprint we’ll also be formalising insights that will guide us in developing our recommendations for the next iteration of the Declaration.

If you’d like to hear more about the discovery and what we’ve learnt, register for our Digital Leaders Week talk on Tuesday 20 June at 10am.

News from our Round 6 funded projects

Despite the early stages for our newly funded projects, many are making significant progress with formulating their project teams, beginning procurement and drafting initial plans for their project.

Sharing planning consultation data across council boundaries (Epping Forest District Council)

During this sprint, the Epping Forest project team held an initial meeting with a potential delivery partner to review the draft brief and define the scope of the project. A project officer working group was formed, with weekly meetings starting this month.

Over the next fortnight, the team will review the proposal and scope of work from the preferred delivery partner, complete procurement, and schedule workshops for user research requirements. The project team will also plan engagement sessions with members, developers and community groups.

Sharing data to safeguard missing vulnerable adults (Greater Manchester Combined Authority)

The project team is continuing to develop tender documents for the procurement process, collaborating with information governance (IG) leads to ensure the inclusion of IG requirements.

The project team attended a Local Digital session which provided helpful insights on the successful execution of discovery projects. In addition, they have established a dedicated Microsoft Teams site for efficient organisation and storage of project documentation.

Delivering an infrastructure mapping platform (Kent County Council)

The project team has already begun the initial screening phase for their data analyst position, which will remain active until Tuesday 6 June. The role has generated an overwhelming response, with over 200 applicants expressing their interest.

Given the high volume of applications for both the data analyst and data coordinator roles, it will take time for the team to sift through the applications and create a shortlist for interviews.

Additionally, the team’s ICT resource will implement the initial platform environment on Monday 12 June.

Andrew Smith, Strategic Planning and Infrastructure Analyst at Kent County Council, recently attended the Agile and Digital training course organised by Local Digital. Andrew said of the course:

“The training proved to be excellent and provided valuable insights into challenging the traditional mindset within our organisation. It highlighted the importance of fostering meaningful delivery and encouraging innovation.”

Improving Local Authority Building Control Services (London Borough of Lambeth)

The project team joined a meeting with the Local Digital team on Monday 5 June to discuss various roles such as a user researcher and a content designer. This meeting also helped their pre-planning phase for the project kick-off.

Next week, three members of the team will be attending a three-day Agile for Teams course.

Improving housing advice services to prevent homelessness (London Borough of Newham)

The Newham project team successfully published the supplier specification on the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) Digital Outcomes framework on Tuesday 23 May and have addressed any clarification questions that have been raised. Currently, the team is in the process of drafting roles and responsibilities, which will be finalised in collaboration with the appointed supplier.

The deadline for supplier responses is Wednesday 7 June. By Wednesday 14 June, the project team aim to complete the evaluation process and make a decision.

Digitising bulk waste collections (North Tyneside Council)

The project team has been refining their job description for the user researcher role, and are aiming to submit it through the HR process in the upcoming weeks.

They have also reached out to their engagement team to seek guidance on how to gather feedback from the public effectively.

In the next sprint, their focus will be on exploring various options for public consultation and advancing their recruitment process.

User journeys into adult social care (ASC) (London Borough of Redbridge)

The Redbridge project team has been focusing on finalising the procurement specification for the discovery project, engaging with potential partners and discussing the next steps in the process.

In the upcoming sprint, the team will establish a user group in preparation for gathering user stories. They will be collecting and organising data to prepare for the next phase of the project.

Digital smart flood warning system (Wakefield Metropolitan Borough Council)

A member of the Wakefield project team has completed the Digital and Agile training course, and three more team members are booked for upcoming sessions.

The project team recently had a one-to-one session with Local Digital and are now arranging a project meeting on Teams to catch up with the rest of the team. This meeting will mark the beginning of the first team workshop, where they will define the precise scope of the project and create a shareable timeline. A full project start is expected to take place in early July.

Investigating a digital support hub for carers (London Borough of Southwark)

The project reference group recently met to review the Terms of Reference document, focusing on project governance and social and emotional learning (SEL) partner roles.

Some team members attended the Local Digital webinar on conducting a discovery project, which provided valuable insights. Hiren Gandhi (Project Manager) has met with Southwark Council’s procurement team to understand their IT/Digital procurement process.

In the upcoming sprint, the team will hold a project reference group meeting to agree on the high-level project plan, milestones and Terms of Reference. Hiren will review procurement options and register on suitable procurement frameworks.

Continuous funding model (CFM) projects

Greenwich Community Directory (Royal Borough of Greenwich)

During this sprint, the project team has accomplished several key milestones. They finalised the user journey for signup and login, adopting a simplistic approach and utilising the native functionality within Outpost.

Additionally, they have actioned scoping activities to define the design and expected behaviours of the search component. The team has also organised a workshop to establish their strategy for quality testing, particularly focusing on automated testing.

Looking ahead to the next sprint, the Greenwich team aims to complete the design phase of the search component and begin its implementation. They also plan to iterate Outpost to incorporate the Care Quality Commission (CQC) data feed for care homes. This will then be followed by a trial run of their data migration exercise.

Low-code patterns for housing management (London Borough of Redbridge)

Throughout this sprint, the project team has been showcasing clickable prototypes to developers, facilitating the transition from alpha to the next stages. They have also scheduled a sprint until the beginning of Wednesday 28 June, focussing on backlog refinement.

As they look ahead, the project team’s focus will be on further backlog refinement and prioritisation of user stories. They have also enlisted Placecube to continue developing additional low-code features that will be beneficial during the build phase.

The team is aiming to expand their collaboration with Housing Officers from other councils to test their designs. This will enable them to define patterns for various request types, such as tenancy changes and reporting anti-social behaviour. If you’re interested in collaborating with them, please contact tom.harrison@redbridge.gov.uk.

Have your say on our Sprint Notes

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That’s it for this sprint, thanks for reading! For the daily download on all things #LocalDigital, be sure to follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn and the DLUHC Digital Blog.



Local Digital
Local Digital

The Local Digital team is part of the UK Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities. Read more about our work: https://www.localdigital.gov.uk.