Postbureaucrat

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

Featured posts

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,…

The GOV.UK team

October 17, 2012

What’s most interesting about today’s launch of GOV.UK isn’t the savings, nor the focus on user needs, nor even the remarkable (for Government) technology stack it’s all built on. What’s really interesting is the team that built it. When Alan Mather or Dan Harrison describe the eDelivery Team c.2004, you get a sense of the…

What do you want from me? 7 alternatives to ‘Leave a comment’

July 27, 2012

Think back to you last digital engagement project outside Facebook. What did you ask people for? Chances are, you asked for a ‘comment’. Maybe a ‘reply’. ‘Feedback’, perhaps. A handful of you might have requested a ‘submission’. That’s not necessarily wrong – all of those are valid forms of input and depending on the goals…

Engagement on a shoestring

July 27, 2012

You could probably do more digital engagement around a series of stakeholder seminars, but it would be a tall order. For the last month or so, DCMS have been running a little site we helped build for themĀ on our Read+Comment platform, to open up discussion around a series of seminars they’re running to inform the…

Fixing consultation

July 17, 2012

Interesting news today from the Cabinet Office, who issued their three-page Consultation Principles (embedded below), with the accompanying explanation: The Government is improving the way it consults by adopting a more proportionate and targeted approach, so that the type and scale of engagement is proportional to the potential impacts of the proposal. The emphasis is…