User research and service design for third sector

The way services are delivered in the third sector has evolved. New technologies enable previously unthinkable economies of reach and scale.

This evolution has often been driven by technology which can mean services designed around the way a system works rather than supporting genuine user needs. Organisations miss opportunities to support the people they serve and users feel frustrated by clunky processes and unintuitive touchpoints.

Our user centred approach means that we design for and with the people who interact with you. By integrating your customers and users throughout the design process we make a significant difference to their experience of the service and the organisation.

Discovery phase

If you need to launch or update a service, our rigorous approach will answer the question: who are our users and how can we best meet their needs?

Activities

Discovery research usually involves contextual or lab-based user research, co-design workshops, stakeholder workshops and experience mapping.

Duration

4 to 12 weeks depending on the scope of the research.

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How our discovery and design sprints with Scope helped identify opportunities and prioritise user needs around their new employment service

Prototype and design

Once we have clear idea of who the users are and the context in which they will use the service, we explore hypotheses through a series of design sprints. We prototype concepts and iteratively test and refine them with users.

Activities

Prototyping and design work involves: workshops where we explore and define hypotheses, journey mapping, storyboarding, sketching, prototyping and user research to evaluate ideas prior to producing high fidelity design.

Duration

4 to 12 weeks depending on the scale of the design.

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How we worked with the UK Cabinet Office to run design sprints for NCSC and CiSP

Optimisation

If your service is already running but you know it could be better, our customer centred optimisation process will identify specific changes to make and new concepts to evaluate.

Activities

Optimisation usually involves regular short rounds of user research and designing quick prototypes to test ideas.

Duration

We partner with organisations for six to 12 months and work on a fixed monthly budget.

Training

We support in-house teams to develop skills in user research, customer journey analysis, design and optimisation.

Activities

Sessions are tailored based on experience.

Duration

We can run sessions for anything from half a day through to ongoing mentoring and support.