Digital First Service Standard

Summary

This document describes the minimum standard required when delivering a digital public service. The document is based upon GDS' "Digital by Default" standard.

Contents

Overview of the Digital First Service Standard

The Digital First Service Standard is a set of 22 criteria that all Scottish public sector online services and Scottish Government corporate services must meet. This includes services for users (for example submitting an application) or corporate services (for example checking your payslip online).

The standard has 3 themes:

  • user needs - focus on what your users want to do rather than the organisation’s objectives or the mechanics of delivering your service
  • technology – how you’ve built your service
  • business capability and capacity – having the right team with enough time to maintain the service

The standard aims to make sure that services in Scotland are continually improving and that users are always the focus.

Criteria

User Centered

Understand user needs. Research to develop a deep knowledge of who the service users are and what that means for the design of the service.

Additional information can be found here.

Continuous Feedback

Put a plan in place for ongoing user research and usability testing to continuously seek feedback and input from users to improve the service.

Additional information can be found here.

Cross-functional Team

Put in place a sustainable multidisciplinary team that can design, build and operate the service, led by a suitably skilled senior manager with decision-making responsibility.

Additional information can be found here.

Continuous Improvement

Build the service incrementally, releasing early and often, using the iterative and user-centred methods set out in the GDS service manual.

Additional information can be found here.

Sustainability

Build a service that can be iterated and improved on a frequent basis and make sure that you have the capability, resources and technical flexibility to do so.

Additional information can be found here.

Technology Appraisal

Evaluate what technology, tools and systems will be used to build, host, operate and measure the service, and how to procure them.

Additional information can be found here.

Information Governance

Evaluate what user data and information the digital service will be providing or storing, and address the security level, legal responsibilities, privacy issues and risks associated with the service (consulting with experts where appropriate).

Additional information can be found here.

Open Source

Make all new source code open and reusable, and publish it under appropriate licences (or provide a convincing explanation as to why this cannot be done for specific subsets of the source code).

Additional information can be found here.

Open Standards

Use open standards and common government platforms where available.

Additional information can be found here.

Operational Acceptance

Regularly test the end-to-end service in an environment identical to that of the live version, including on all common browsers and devices, and using dummy accounts and a representative sample of users.

Additional information can be found here.

Business Continuity

Define, document and regularly test a plan to handle disasters and other incidents that may cause the digital service to be taken temporarily offline.

Additional information can be found here.

Usable and Accessible

Create a service that is usable, accessible and intuitive enough that users succeed first time.

Additional information can be found here.

Consistent User Experience

Build a service consistent with the user experience of the rest of mygov.scot including using the design patterns and style guide.

Additional information can be found here.

Channel Shift

Identify and, wherever possible, remove impediments that prevent users from using the digital service, clearly establishing it as the primary channel. Plan to provide appropriate assisted digital support if necessary.

Additional information can be found here.

Data Driven

Use tools for analysis that collect performance data. Use this data to analyse the success of the service and to translate this into features and tasks for the next phase of development.

Additional information can be found here.

Performance Management

Identify performance indicators for the service, including the 4 mandatory key performance indicators (KPIs) defined in the GDS service manual. Establish a benchmark for each metric and make a plan to enable improvements.

The KPIs are:

Additional information can be found here.

Transparent

Publish performance data on the Digital First Performance Platform.

Additional information can be found here.

Open Data

Make all non-personal, non-commercially sensitive data from the service available for re-use by others under an appropriate licence.

Additional information can be found here.

Green ICT

Deliver a digital service whose impact on the environment, over its whole lifecycle, is understood. Plan to reduce the environmental impact of the service over time.

Additional information can be found here.

Data Hosting and Data Centres

Adopt cloud computing or virtualisation as the preferred approaches to the delivery of data hosting for the service.

Additional information can be found here.

Ecosystem

Identify how your service aligns with Scotland’s digital ecosystem.

Additional information can be found here.

Test the service from beginning to end with the minister responsible for it.

Additional information can be found here.



A Digital First Service Standard poster is also available.