Postbureaucrat

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

Featured posts

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 them 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…

Employee #1

July 2, 2012

When I left the civil service and set up a company, nearly two and half years ago, it’s fair to say I didn’t have much of a plan. Thanks to many kind people and plenty of luck, the purchase orders kept flowing and I’ve found myself working alongside some fantastic people, whether it’s training communicators…

Taking email seriously

May 19, 2012

I’ve just written a wrap-up post over on the Mailcamp site about Thursday’s Mailcamp12 event at the NAO, which saw over 80 people discuss email marketing, newsletters and alerts with similarly smart folk from across and beyond the public sector. As I say there: For me, it felt like the conversation had moved on a…

The 5-point ROI calculator

May 9, 2012

  If you’re anything like me, you’ll have been paying lip service to the concept of ROI for years. I’m generally sceptical of the validity of most ROI calculations, but don’t have a credible argument for why we shouldn’t attempt them. I generally mumble something about ‘qualitative’ data and look a bit sheepish. So in…

Beating the bounds: a starter for ten

May 8, 2012

I really enjoyed a recent post by Tim Lloyd, head of digital at BIS, applying the principles of the ancient custom of ‘beating the bounds‘ to the process of managing a government department’s digital estate: Like those dignitaries beating the bounds, I don’t think it’s about owning every part of the estate, but it is…

Infographic: Should I Post This Update?

April 13, 2012

The Teacampers were on good form (and vast numbers) yesterday, to discuss the vexed question of social media guidance for civil servants which the GDS Digital Engagement team are currently drafting. It’s to their great credit that Emer, Lou, Jane and colleagues are developing the guidance in the open, in consultation with those inside and…