The Digital Inclusion Toolkit has officially entered its next stage of development.
If you’ve been following our blogs on the development of the digital inclusion toolkit, you may have noticed that there has not been much news since the official launch of digitalinclusionkit.org back in December 2020.
Our last blog summarised our progress so far, and touched on some of our plans for the continuation of this project. We are glad to announce that we have now secured follow-on funding from MHCLG for a further 6 months of development work, and have kicked off the next phase of work on this project.
What we’re thinking about
The next phase of development for the toolkit really needs to focus on making sure that it meets user needs, both in terms of content and accessibility.
With this in mind, we’ve set some objectives for the next phase of work:
- Increase the number of organisations using the toolkit
- Increase the number of active contributors
- Gather user research to lead further development of the platform
- Ensure diverse needs are accounted for
- Secure long term support for the toolkit
We’ve also been considering what our process for collecting and curating external content will look like. Expanding beyond the content our partners are able to contribute is a key short term goal, and vital to making the toolkit a comprehensive resource.
What we’ve been doing
Much of the first few weeks has been focused on planning the next stages of work and refining our vision for the toolkit. Our current focus is on improving the platform in line with user needs, and finding ways to evaluate its success.
Developing a theory of change model has helped us to clearly express our objectives for the project and the actions needed to achieve them, including how we will monitor and evaluate the success of the toolkit. Our next job will include refining the outcomes and impacts we’re hoping to see, and setting some baselines to measure them against.
Reviewing the types of questions we’ve received, both directly relating to the toolkit and as individual partners, has helped us frame some of the common questions and themes as ‘user types’. This is something we can use to make sure we are meeting our audience needs, and will continue to refine as we receive more contact from toolkit users and contributors.
We will be putting together some surveys for different user groups to begin collecting data within the next few weeks.
We have started the next phase of platform development with updates we want to make to the site, including changes to improve article discoverability. Further development work will be led by upcoming user research.
Some of the things we know we want to improve include:
- Notifications for new content and comments
- Improved discoverability of relevant articles
- More ways of browsing and searching for content
The next stage will focus on continuing to build our content base, further development work on the platform, and planning for future user research. We will also be refining our evaluation framework and setting some baselines to measure success.
As always we would love to hear from you if you have any suggestions or contributions to make. User research is key to the success of the project so any feedback on the site layout, content, functionality and accessibility would be gratefully received.