Why we should stop talking about Assisted Digital

I’ve heard a few presentations, podcasts and the like recently that have referenced Assisted Digital and Service Design. This hasn’t felt right. And I think the reason for this is that I don’t believe that the two concepts can co-exist. Service Design assumes that you consider the entire service from the outset, regardless of delivery channel (hence the renaming of the Digital Service Standard to …

Five things to remember about changing service provision to respond to lockdown

It’s easy to rush into changing a service to meet the demands of a post-COVID 19 world in lockdown but it’s worth pausing before making changes. Failing to consider users risks wasting resource by providing a service that won’t be used because it’s not accessible. Even worse, it could mean that we unknowingly increase the isolation or exclusion of our most vulnerable users by introducing …

F1 qualifying, Italy 2019

Formula 1 2020 season preview

A preview to this season’s forthcoming F1 action is going to be different to a preview to last season’s action. Last year, we had a crop of talented rookies and intrigue at all top three teams: would Bottas make the grade, would new Honda engines take Red Bull back to the top, and – most enticingly of all – what would happen to the incoming …

Product managing beyond products

My manager had asked to talk to me. The conversation we had was one of those conversations that you dream about as a product manager. When I say “dream”, I mean wake up early in the morning wondering what on earth you’ve let yourself in for. She started with  “you’re not doing much at the moment are you, Matt?” and then swiftly followed up with …

railway tracks being laid

what is change?

If a factory is torn down but the rationality that produced it is left standing, then that rationality will simply produce another factory. If a revolution destroys a government, but the systematic patterns of thought that produced that government are left intact, then those patterns will repeat themselves.” – Robert Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance When thinking about change – particularly in …

question mark

Right question, wrong answer: agile stakeholder management

You are part of a successful multi-disciplinary team working in a user centered and iterative way. A stakeholder – not a user – in the service your team manages gets in touch with feedback. What’s your first reaction? It’s probably to tell them to go away. This reaction may be even more vigorously expressed when the feedback betrays a lack of understanding about how your …

delorean

10 things to remember when preparing for a service standard assessment

The last couple of times I’ve prepared teams for service standard assessments, I’ve put together a presentation to help explain the process. This has covered the background to the service standard and the main areas that I’ve seen cause confusion or problems. I don’t intend to cover the background here [1] but I thought I’d list the areas that can cause issues, in case that’s …

narrow walls

The value of user needs

Prologue A meeting room in a UK government department. Being discussed is the integration of a vendor’s system into the digital service managed by the various people on the other side of the room. A number of questions are raised about the approach to the integration and the user experience of the service once the new flow is included. The head of the vendor team …

Into the great wide open

Have you ever jumped off – or even out of – something that existed rather higher up that you’d have liked? I once got to climb to the top of a telegraph pole, stand on top of it and then jump to catch a trapeze swing suspended above and a little way away from it. This experience came with two negative aspects. The first of …

10 questions that mean 2019 will be a great F1 season

1. The five year itch? 3rd. 4th. 2nd. 2nd. That’s Sebastian Vettel’s championship placings during his F1 career with Ferrari. It’s not just the hangover of last year’s disappointment that points to next year being critical, it’s history. Consider the difference between the record above and these two sequences of championship placings: 2nd. 4th. 2nd. 2nd. 3rd. 2nd. 2nd. 5th (crucially, missing almost half of …