Using Annex F as a base

Annex F lists the core services DfE expects local authorities to deliver through their family hubs. It also sets out the minimum expectations of the services that are not receiving additional investment through this programme.

Mapping by business analysts (BAs)

BAs have mapped the services data from our partner local authorities and looked at a number of other local authority websites to identify how they categorise services on their websites.

They produced a list of level 1 and level 2 categories.

We then ran a refinement activity to ensure the categories listed should be part of the service we are providing. For example we removed childcare because it is out of scope for this service.

Testing the level 2 categories with users

We ran card sorting exercises with both family experience and information sharing users to:

  • identify if any of the terminology used in the category 2 list was confusing
  • identify where we need to alter or add to terms to support understanding
  • understand how users grouped level 2 categories
  • gain insights from users on how they would name the groups they formed

Adapting level 1 and 2 categories based on user needs

We took the approach to make as few changes as possible, and only deviate where we identified a need to do so. The naming of some level 2 categories may need to change depending on further user testing findings.

Adding special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) categories and mental health

We have taken the same approach when adding SEND categories, and we are using the list identified in the DfE SEND code of practice guidance. We will test this with users, alongside the other categories, during private beta. Mental health subcategories have been challenging to identify through the BA work and therefore we will include a level 2 category under health.

Future considerations

We are looking at whether we can now use a single category list for both the front and back end for private beta.

The next steps are to agree if we can use a single set of categories and get them locked down for MVP.