Through user research, we found out that the public want to understand what kind of person is representing them as an MP or a Lord. Parliament holds a lot of this information but we wanted to understand what specific information people want to know about their representatives.
As many of you will be only too familiar with, recruiting people into technical roles can be particularly challenging. Here at PDS we're dedicated to finding better ways to deal with these challenges.
Some readers might know who we are, but I’m sure that many still don’t know. So, this post aims to answer a few existential questions about the (Corporate) Data team that you may have.
Back in March, I was part of the House of Lords contingent at the Rapid Start event. The key theme was ‘Unlocking democracy for all’ and, in a small but significant way, our prototype delivered that aim by making it as easy for anyone to follow statutory instruments (Parliament considers around 1,000 per year) as for bills (around 20 per year).
For our first sprint we had a goal to produce a working in-browser prototype. It made sense to follow on from some of our work in the Fluxx rapid start incubation.
Holly is the Deputy Head of Public Information in the House of Commons. Holly was invited along to join a team consisting of staff from the Digital Service, our partner fluxx and other House staff from the Lords and the Commons in a two day rapid prototyping event called “Rapid Start.”
Last week we reached the 3rd week of our incubation period. Our team (Rebecca, Noel, Ganesh, Giuseppe, Jack, Lino and Jocelyn), some business representatives (Ed, Holly and Matt) and our friends from fluxx have been working hard on our two prototypes ‘Jargon Buster’ and ‘Interact’.
After a really busy few days of creating ideas around “Unlocking digital democracy for all”, we're working on providing definitions to complicated words and phrases on our website (Jargon Buster) and supporting the public in connecting them to take some action with Parliament.
Last week, we ran a rapid prototyping event with a company called Fluxx based in Farringdon. A small group of people from across Parliament - the Digital Service, the House of Commons and the House of Lords - gathered at the Fluxx offices, to think about ideas related to 'Unlocking Democracy for All'.
One of the top tasks for people using Parliament's website is finding out who their MP is. A recent report by the Hansard Society found that only 22% of people questioned could correctly name their MP, so a simple service to help give people a way to find out about their member of Parliament is useful and necessary.