Hackney Spacebank: Weeknotes w/c 20th May 2019

We are in the final two weeks of the prototype phase. It’s like Christmas Eve – everyone is excited, nervous and a little bit over tired!

Our sprint goal is:

“Define our MVP, co-design a workflow with library colleagues, get ready for our service assessment and tie up our loose ends.”

We welcomed Emma Lewis into the team this sprint. She is a front end developer who joined Hackney this week. We’re already benefiting from a fresh pair of eyes on our work.

Things I am excited about:

  • Emma and Sebastian are coding a calendar which will show the availability of library rooms. There’s some great open source options and also the potential to build our own.
  • A workshop with library colleagues to co-design their work flow. We’ve been itching to collaborate more closely and can’t wait to make something together! I get to join in this time and I’m looking forward to delivering this workshop with Joy and Sam.
  • The final decision on what our MVP is going to look like. We’ve come along way from our “three experiments” at the end of discovery. Richard, our Product Owner is on the case, and will be presenting his proposal to the team at the end of the sprint.

Things I am nervous about:

  • The decision to do a workshop with library colleagues is the right choice, but it’s the harder option. We could have pulled together a prototype based on evidence alone and done some testing to validate it. This didn’t feel right. To get this done, we have hefty dependency on whether duty managers can swap shifts and redraft rotas. It’s a big ask in a small amount of time.
  • We’ve only got 9 days this sprint, instead of 10. Every day matters at the moment. I love bank holidays, but it’s a delivery manager’s nightmare when there are 4 in 7 weeks. I have more grey hairs as a result.

Creating a Job Description Register – weeknotes

Good afternoon all,

We ran two User Journey mapping sessions:

HR Business Partners: We created a persona ”Gloria” who is a HR Business Partner,  wants all the documents to be available for review and fairly evaluate the Job Description to grade it.  We created a User Journey Map of the Job evaluation process. There are 4 main steps within this process: ‘Receipt of Job Description and Questionnaire’, ‘Review the documents’, ‘Evaluating the Job Description’ and ‘Implementing the decision’. We captured what each Business Partner was doing, thinking and saying/feeling.

Business Managers: We created a persona ”Mohammad Hussain” who is a Business Manager, wants to easily create a Job Description with guidance given by the HR Business Partners, so that he can get the grade for the Job Description. They want to make sure that the finalised version is stored into an agreed location. There are 5 steps within the process of creating a Job Description: ‘Identifying the need’, ‘Scoping out the role’, ‘Creating a Job Description’, ‘Job Evaluation process’ and ‘Finalising the Job Description’.

From the sessions’ outcomes, we came up with the User Needs (as below). We presented them to the Business Managers and HR Business Partners and ran User Needs Prioritisation Workshop. The prioritised User Needs are highlighted in ‘Yellow’.

Business Managers User Needs:

‘Having building support’  

‘Gathering a business case’

’Managing my time’

‘Getting Sign off’

‘Create a role that’s fit for purpose’

‘Support from others’

‘Process’

‘Consistency in JD Storage’

‘Finding out the result of Job Evaluation’

‘Job Evaluation’

‘Organisation Structure’

‘Job Families’

‘Where do I find the Job Description template’

HR Business Partners User Needs:

‘Understanding context’

‘Understanding the actual changes being proposed’

‘Process’

‘Resources’

‘Managing expectations (the outprocess)’

‘Do I have enough info/is there sufficient info to progress?’

‘Transparency in outcome’

Where is the current JD?

‘Understanding the actual changes being proposed’

‘Managing my time’

‘Ensuring fairness’

‘Have a clear Job Evaluation Process’

‘Scoring methods’

‘Organisation structure’

‘Questionnaire’

‘Storing, versioning and linking Job Description with Job Evaluation’

‘Communicating the outcome of Job Evaluation’

Next week, we will let you know about how we have created User Stories based on these prioritised User Needs. We will also discuss how we used MoSCoW to prioritise the User Stories. Thank you for reading.

Hackney Spacebank: Weeknotes, w/c 8th May 2019


We started our week with sprint planning. Our goal for sprint 4 is:

“Testing our early prototype with users, pulling together initial recommendations on our tech stack, completing accessibility testing on our three experiments and taking our first look at the service assessment.”

We hit the ground running this sprint. We completed two days of testing by the end of the week. Joy put in some serious leg work to get our prototype test ready and Richard and Sam whipped up a discussion guide. We’ve learnt a lot from these first two rounds and we’ve got two more days of testing next week.

Sebastian is putting our early experiments through some accessibility testing. We want to have an idea of where we might run into accessibility issues and start thinking about how to address these as early as possible.

Liam is kicking off our tech review. He’s been gathering up background material and talking to other project teams. Last, but never least, Winston’s been doing battle (and winning) with the research findings from interviews with library staff and security officers.

From a delivery perspective, a late Easter break and two May bank holidays in close succession is putting a squeeze on our time and capacity. That said, we’ve all benefited from some extra rest and it’s prompted some good conversations about how to prioritise work.

Network redesign and implementation for webfirst – Weeknotes

WC: 07/05

Where we are
We are halfway through sprint 5 which is the sprint before last in this discovery, learning and gathering information phase.

Last sprint: Sprint 4
We made significant progress in the sprint 4, achieving our sprint goal which was to begin surveying users, selected from 10 proof of concept sites, on their current experience of our network services.
We also kicked off work to set up a lab in our communications room, from where we will test new, pioneering network devices, loaned from reputable suppliers of network devices. The aim is to learn from these tests and gain insights on how to design a pioneering and fit for purpose network service for all our users.

Looking ahead:
Our hope is that sprint 6 will be the last of this phase and that we we would have collated enough learning and isight about our current network, user pain points and needs to allow us to begin to enter an exploratory phase to start working out a network design that will be fit for purpose and reasonable for implementation.

What have we learned:
Liked: The team is working better together, user research is amazing, there is a sense of progress on the project.
Learned: Show and tell is good and should be done more often – every other sprint
Lacked: Pressure on engineers time impacts projects. Infrastructural managers will work closely with team to mitigate this where possible.

This Sprint: Sprint 5
This sprint, we have continued with setting up of network devices for testing and we are also collating feedback from our survey of over 240 users across 10 sites. We are excited to have received over 50 responses to the survey in the first couple of days of launch.

Everyone has been amazing. So special thanks to Gillian Newman, Henry Lewis, Isaiah Oketola, Chidi Oko, Shafiq Ahmed, Mal Morris and Lindsay Rex

But I think star of the sprint is Gillian Newman for getting the user research surveys out.

Creating a Job Description Register – weeknotes

Do you know where your Job Description is? And is it the most recent version?

The answer to the above questions should be ‘Yes’ and ‘Yes’ but is not often the case.

Job Description is probably one of the most important employee documents and should be stored in the employee’s personnel folder on eDOCS. For many reasons, this does not happen and causes a great amount of stress when the HR Business Partners or the Manager/employee needs it.

This project, currently in its Discovery phase, aims to understand the depth of the problem. After the interviews with HR Business Partners and Business Managers, the following key issues were identified:

Multiple Storage Locations: Instead of saving the Job Description in an agreed place (i.e. personnel folder), departments have their own ways of storing them. Job descriptions are being stored in many locations. For example Service Review folder on eDOCS, Business Manager’s drive, hard copies. As a result, the overall process becomes inconsistent across the Council.

Versioning: Over time, Job Descriptions get updated/changed. As a result, there are many versions of them and it becomes difficult to keep track of them. This ends up being a huge burden for HR Business Partners and other stakeholders as they have to spend a lot of time to find the correct version of Job Descriptions.

Multiple Job Descriptions for the same role: Many employees have the same Job Description. For instance, there may be 20 social workers, all with the same Job Description. If a change is made to one of the social worker’s Job Description, it then has to be made to all the other social workers’ Job Descriptions. Once these changes are made, the updated version has to be saved into each and every social workers’ personnel folders. This could cause consistency and efficiency issues.

Two User Journey Mapping workshops were held with the main stakeholders: HR Business Partners and Business Managers (see images below). This helped to understand the User Needs of the stakeholders and their feelings. More information on this next week.

Blockers:

  • It’s a real struggle to get everyone together for workshops due to the existing workloads.

Next week:

  • User Needs prioritisation session with HR Business Partners
  • Meeting with the Head of HR to review the current progress and prioritise the next steps.

Phase: Discovery

Team members: Kirstine Ward, Phillipa Newis, Jignesh Sanghvi, Hidayat Deen

Thank you for reading this far, have a great weekend!