90% archaeology: my notes and reflections on Service Design in Government 2015

There's never been a more exciting time to be designing services in the public sector. But it can still be a lonely existence - in any organisation, a small number of advocates may find themselves trying to shift a large mass with plenty of inertia. The Service Design in Government conference that I attended last week has an … Continue reading 90% archaeology: my notes and reflections on Service Design in Government 2015

The Last Target Operating Model You’ll Ever Need™

I first wrote this as a comment on Joel Bailey's excellent blog post titled 'This thing called agile might kill us all' but thought it worth re-hashing and expanding here. For context, Joel writes about "working for a big high street bank. The brief is to redesign the ‘end to end mortgage experience’. The timescale is to reach … Continue reading The Last Target Operating Model You’ll Ever Need™

Three things a city in charge of its destiny ought to know about software

2015 promises change in the way that Leeds, Yorkshire and England’s north are governed. Not before time, decision-making and funding are to be brought closer to us, to the cities and localities where we live, learn, play and work. This new settlement will arrive at a time when cities and governments everywhere are challenged to design … Continue reading Three things a city in charge of its destiny ought to know about software

Real work only begins when we break out of our bubble

"Boy in the bubble" David Vetter passed his life in a sterile enclosure breathing purified air and touched only with plastic gloves. While his parents and doctors attempted to make his life as normal as possible, they lived in fear of the tiniest exposure to common impurities and infections. He died aged 12 in 1984, after a bone marrow transplant given in … Continue reading Real work only begins when we break out of our bubble

Seeing over the next hill – a service design pattern

Over the years I've worked with digital services in different spaces, from sports performance to house buying to students on campus and training in the workplace. And there's this one picture that resurfaces in service after service. I need to get it out of my head and into the world, where I hope others will help me develop … Continue reading Seeing over the next hill – a service design pattern

Not All Mammals! In defence of designing for “people”

I've been thinking about this exchange with Roberta... @mattedgar Lots of people _talk_ about getting users in the room. This weekend @mHealthLeeds is actually doing it. #mhleeds @RobertaWedge @mattedgar Users of what? In a health-care context, the term covers layers of euphemism. @mattedgar @RobertaWedge fair point. Alternatives to the word 'user' gratefully received. (Often but not always "people" … Continue reading Not All Mammals! In defence of designing for “people”

How I learned to stop worrying and love the jam

A lightning talk at Service Design in Government... There’s a growing interest in hacks and jam events in the public sector. Over the past months in Leeds alone, we’ve seen events around open government data, mental health, cycling and public transport. Great stuff can happen at these events, yet they can also be unfulfilling for participants … Continue reading How I learned to stop worrying and love the jam