How we’re using Webinars to demonstrate how quick and easy it is to use GOV.UK Forms
Government Digital Service
by Amanda Dahl, Deputy Director of Digital Service Platforms, GDS
1M ago
Here at GDS we’re focused on making digital government simpler, clearer and faster for everyone. As part of the early access phase of GOV⁠.⁠UK Forms we wanted to put this into practice by demonstrating just how quickly and easily you can create an online form. With a sold out online audience, we hosted a webinar showcasing the service, current and future features, and showing how GOV⁠.⁠UK Forms is already making a difference across government. GOV⁠.⁠UK Forms replaces the dependence on PDFs and document-based forms. In just a matter of minutes you can create a new online form that’s quick to p ..read more
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How we are improving GOV.UK Pay with user satisfaction feedback
Government Digital Service
by Nadia Mugeni, Senior User Researcher, GDS
2M ago
GOV.UK Pay has grown every year since launching in 2016. 2023 has been our biggest year yet with 364 public sector organisations currently using Pay to take payments for 960 different services, an increase of 21%. The Pay customer satisfaction survey is one of the ways that we get feedback from Pay users, ensuring that we continue to deliver for the needs of diverse organisations and services that use Pay.  This survey allows us to collect quantitative data from a large group of people. We ask a range of different questions to understand how our public sector users feel about the differe ..read more
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How we migrated our PostgreSQL database with 11 seconds downtime
Government Digital Service
by David McDonald
3M ago
GOV.UK Notify is hosted on the GOV.UK Platform as a Service (PaaS). The PaaS is being retired, so we are migrating all of our infrastructure into our own Amazon Web Services (AWS) account. This blog post explains how we migrated our PostgreSQL database with minimal downtime. Migrating our database The PaaS provides a database for us and we use it to store all of our data - from data about each notification we send to the content of the hundreds of thousands of templates service teams use to send those notifications. This is an AWS RDS PostgreSQL database and it lives in the PaaS’ AWS account ..read more
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How we’re making it easier to access government forms online
Government Digital Service
by Oliver Quinlan, Senior User Researcher, GDS
3M ago
We’re making it easier for departments to build digital services here at GDS and we’ve built a tool to make it easy to create online forms for GOV.UK without any specialist digital skills. GOV.UK Forms makes creating an online, accessible form as easy as creating a document. We’ve been testing forms created using our tool with the public, and found they much preferred online forms to PDFs and other document-based versions. We learned some interesting things from users about why they find online forms easier to use. Usability testing We’ve been doing lots of testing with the immediate users of ..read more
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Department for Education: Our experience of joining GOV.UK One Login
Government Digital Service
by Jayne Farrington - Senior Product Owner, Department for Education
4M ago
This is the first time I have written a guest blog for Government Digital Service (GDS), so I’m really pleased to be able to tell you more about my team and the work we have done with GDS and the GOV.UK One Login programme. You might be wondering why my team is called the FAT Badgers… We were originally called the Honey Badgers (due to being fearless and highly intelligent) but then we redesigned Find Apprenticeship Training (FAT) so rebadged ourselves the FAT Badgers. In October 2022, our team in the Department for Education began the work to switch over to GOV.UK One Login for a range of ou ..read more
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How we reduced CSS size and improved performance across GOV.UK
Government Digital Service
by Jon Kirwan, Front end developer, GDS
4M ago
We recently reduced CSS size and improved performance across GOV.UK pages by moving away from bundling all CSS into a single stylesheet served to all pages to serving smaller stylesheets containing only the necessary styles for each page. There have been reductions of up to 40% in CSS size on some pages, accompanied by incremental improvements in timing metrics across many pages. These improvements could lead to a slightly faster experience for users accessing GOV.UK through older or low end devices or for people on slower connections. Previously GOV.UK is made up of many different appli ..read more
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How we’re opening up access to GOV.UK Forms
Government Digital Service
by Adam Robertson, Senior Product Manager, Government Digital Service
7M ago
Here at GDS, we’re making it easier for departments to build better digital services. GOV.UK Forms is an online form builder which can be used to make accessible and easy to use digital forms for GOV.UK. It saves time for departments that are processing form submissions, and time for users that are filling in forms. In just a matter of minutes, government teams can replace PDF and other document-based forms with digital forms which all users can access and are legally compliant with the Public Sector Bodies Accessibility Regulations 2018.  Best of all, there’s no need for any technical k ..read more
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The new in-person identity check for GOV.UK One Login
Government Digital Service
by Rachel Tsang, Deputy Director for GOV.UK One Login
8M ago
Core to GDS's mission for GOV.UK One Login is our commitment to make sure as many people as possible can easily prove their identity to access government services.  We are therefore excited to announce that we are now working with the Post Office to run an in-person identity check in their branches, for people who need additional support to use GOV.UK One Login. The in-person service has been created to assist people who want to use GOV.UK One Login, but are unable to use the app or browser journey for identity verification. We’ve designed this route specifically for users without smartp ..read more
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GOV.UK One Login: building a green digital service
Government Digital Service
by Natalie Jones OBE - Director of Digital Identity, Government Digital Service
8M ago
I wanted to update you on an aspect of our work in GOV.UK One Login that we haven’t really talked about before, our drive to make it one of the most sustainable government digital services in operation.  As part of our work to design the solution, we started to take a real interest in how different technical and style choices have a direct impact on carbon emissions. And when we really started to look at it in detail we realised how much work has been done in this space and yet how hard it still was to get a definitive ‘how to’ guide from anywhere if you want to start to calculate the ca ..read more
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How common platforms deliver brilliant digital services
Government Digital Service
by Amanda Dahl, Deputy Director of Digital Service Platforms, GDS
9M ago
Hi there! I joined GDS back in December 2022 and I’m really pleased to be writing my first blog post. I came to GDS because both the organisation and I share a passion for driving positive impact for citizens and I’m so happy to have seen so much evidence of that happening here in the last 6 months. I’m responsible for GDS’s digital service platform products and my teams exist to serve the needs of government users, providing cost-effective, time saving digital solutions that mean there’s no need to reinvent the wheel, go to market through lengthy and costly procurement exercises, or manage t ..read more
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