New Digitising Social Care website passes beta assessment
Last week we were informed that we have passed the Government Digital Service beta assessment for our new website. This brings us closer to being able to launch a brand new service to support the digital transformation of adult social care.
In 2021, People at the Heart of Care, the government’s white paper on adult social care reform, committed to invest at least £150m to drive digitisation in the sector to improve the quality and safety of care through adoption of digital social care records and other proven care technologies.
The digitising social care programme has objectives around adoption of technologies which directly reflect this commitment. Our new website, which will be a source of trusted information, advice and guidance for the sector, will support adult social care providers, wherever they are on their digital transformation journey.
The new website
It’s been a long road to get to this point. Work on this new website with our delivery partner, TPX Impact, began what feels like a lifetime ago in June of 2022. From the very beginning, user experience and engagement has been at the heart of our development. We wanted to ensure that we were listening to voices from across the sector, so that we built a website that truly reflected the sector’s needs. A multi-functional team of user researchers, developers, engineers and delivery managers, as well as our own internal team worked together to build a proposition which led to successful Government Digital Service assessments at both alpha and private beta stage. This was an important part of the process to make sure that the new site complied with the government service standard.
Passing these assessments means we are now able to publish the website and publicly share the work we have been doing and seek live feedback from you, our users.
What about the current Digital Social Care website?
The new digitising social care website builds on the excellent foundations laid through the original Digital Social Care site which was first launched in 2019.
All relevant content from the original site has been transferred over to our new site, ensuring it now meets accessibility and usability requirements. The two sites will run in parallel for a short period while we continue our testing. We will then retire Digital Social Care and the new, CARE branded, digitising social care website will become the main official source of information for the sector.
- The digitising social care website has a plethora of new exciting features and design choices, including:
- A signposting tool – comprising a set of questions which generates a page with tailored recommendations on what we suggest the user explores next on their digital journey.
- Multi-page guide formatting – linking related pages together and creates flexibility in allowing users to skip sections and easily locate the information they need.
- Digital skills database with filters to support care providers in sourcing training which is appropriate for them.
- Use of the CARE branding and styling to further carve out the unique identity of social care, emphasising its distinct characteristics as a sector.
We have and will continue to work in close partnership with the Digital Social Care consortium to ensure that the site supports and reflects the sector’s needs for advice, guidance and skills support, wherever providers are on their digital journey. Their support has been invaluable to date.
However, this is not the end of the road, and we still have plenty of iterating to do. We have reviewed a considerable amount internally, but now is the opportunity for you to get involved and let us know what you think.
We’ll be sharing the live link to our website via our social media channels and newsletter very soon so please keep and eye out for updates.