Hi, I’m Vicki and I’m Head of Service Design at Essex County Council. Over the past few months I’ve been working on what the new service design team will look like. I’m pleased to say we’ve settled on the structure, and we’re now recruiting for service designers, content and interaction designers and user researchers.
I’ve been conducting research here at ECC for over 10 years and during that time I’ve championed the voice of people who use public services. I am really proud that the Council now has a dedicated Research and Citizen Insight team whose job it is to help the organisation build a deep understanding of the lives and experiences of our residents.
This experience as a researcher is what led me to the exciting opportunity in ECC’s Service Design team. When I joined the team in August, the first thing I did was to find out more about the team and how they work. I’ve been really impressed by the great work they are doing and their commitment and energy to making things better for Essex residents. The team may be small in number: but they are serious about creating a county council for the digital age.
Their ambitious Essex.gov.uk project embodies the principles of the Local Digital Declaration by relentlessly focusing on the needs of our residents and reusing Stockport Council’s open source headless-CMS website platform. Essex.gov.uk is a foundational piece of work, but there are many more in the offing.
For example, we are about to embark on discovery research to better understand the opportunities for delivering adult social care IAG services differently in Essex. And following some discovery research and concept testing in Colchester hospital earlier this year, we are now building a prototype service for people returning home from hospital to help them organise their own care and support. That’s why we are building on our current research and design capability to help make that happen.
I’ve been busy exploring what people and skills we need in a service design team. I’ve been inspired by the best practice at Government Digital Service and learning from the experience and expertise of our service design partners FutureGov. This is what our future Service Design team will look like.
This new service design team will complement and act on the work of the Research and Citizen Insight team. Together with citizens and our colleagues across the council this becomes a strong coalition to help us create modern and efficient services fit for the internet age. We want people to join us on this mission.
We’re looking for great people who want to develop their careers with us, and help us to transform the lives of Essex residents. Applications are now open. You can find out more information about the opportunities at ECC Service Design. If you’d like to discuss any of the roles, email me at Victoria.email@example.com.