Postbureaucrat

Personal blogging by Steph Gray, founder of Helpful Digital and erstwhile bureaucrat

Featured posts

Offboarding

July 2, 2013

I’m learning a lot about salesmanship these days. Downstairs at Helpful Towers, where the people who manage our serviced office work, there are posters on the wall celebrating great customer service and setting out the company’s model for managing the customer relationship from first contact, right through to careful ‘off-boarding’, when the client moves out.…

Blogging about blogging

June 26, 2013

Last week, Team Helpful took a day off to focus on kick starting the revamp of our website. The results will hopefully appear soon, but one thing that won’t be appearing on the new site is a blog. Or at least, not in the conventional sense. As a civil servant working in digital six years…

Opening up

May 14, 2013

Twenty years ago, before regular people had the web, I was a 13 year old discovering a hybrid database/scripting application called HyperCard. One of my early projects was a random number generator for the newly-launched National Lottery, which incredibly, made it onto the cover floppy disk (‘3MB of great software!’) one of the early editions…

After the earthquake

March 26, 2013

The changes going on right now in central government digital communications are pretty seismic. Not least because thanks in large part to GDS, digital teams no longer view ‘communications’ as the limit of their ambition these days, as they mainly still did when I was part of one. So what’s the role for a company…

The Wheel of Misfortune

March 3, 2013

I had a great time at CommsCamp in Birmingham last week. Ann, Dan, Darren, Lloyd and helpers did a fantastic job, putting on an event which worked for old hands and those new to unconferences. Every time you think there’s nothing more to talk about, you realise there is (and as always, many of the…

Digital wackiness for 2013

December 31, 2012

Things will be tight in the public sector – and local government especially – in 2013. So far, so Mystic Meg. I don’t underestimate the effort required by the brave souls who, unlike me, are still in public service, just to keep the lights on next year. But it’s not a question of martyrdom: a…

Introducing CommentariatGOVUK

December 21, 2012

It’s almost Christmas, we skipped the 24tips this year, so I thought I’d release a cheeky little mince pie of a WordPress theme in case others find it useful. Today’s seen the launch of the latest little site on our Read+Comment platform, designed for fast-turnaround, flexible publishing of documents for comment. DCLG wanted a site…

Dealing with social media mishaps

October 24, 2012

When you tweet something about work that you shouldn’t have, or from the wrong account and it gets picked up, you want the ground to swallow you up. It’s awful, and the chronicles of social media crises are full of heads on pikestaffs. But what feels like a full-on social media crisis at the time,…