Blog / Agile

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Wellbeing at Unboxed
August 13, 2019
Over the last few months, wellbeing at work has been a hot topic of conversation across the Unboxed team, prompted by discussion during our March company-wide retrospective. Wellbeing in the workplace is increasingly recognised as a key factor in...
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A user research guide for teams new to user-centred design
July 4, 2019
Unboxed was recently invited to attend and contribute to an insightful roundtable discussion, organised by HACT (Housing Associations’ Charitable Trust) and the Chartered Institute of Housing. This session focused on why digital transformat...
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Social prescribing can't happen from behind a desk: designing commu...
June 25, 2019
Loneliness, isolation and mental health are becoming bigger issues in our society. It can be a problem for anyone, of any age or gender. There’s more talk about how, as individuals, we need to be more resilient to handle the stresses of mode...
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Introducing the concept of chatbots to older audiences
May 16, 2019
Chatbots are very much a current theme at the centre of a number of product teams at the moment. From exploring ways of meeting increasing service demand through to identifying the next “big” way of interacting with customers — there are a number ...
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Creating a user-centered back office planning system with Southwark...
May 15, 2019
Planning departments in local authorities are currently experiencing a sector-wide problem: back-end case management systems aren’t meeting the needs of the Planning Officers using them. Over the last few years, a number of pain points have emerg...
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Working with UAL students in collaboration with char.gy
April 29, 2019
Just over two years ago, I graduated from London College of Communication on the then MDes Service Design and Innovation course. This year, I was invited back to help out with the collaborative unit. This unit is all about collaborating with other...
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Unboxed and char.gy win DigitalAgenda Impact Award
March 8, 2019
Unboxed has won the 2019 DigitalAgenda Impact Award in the ‘Connected Cities’ category for our work with char.gy in supporting electric vehicle uptake by providing residents with an EV charging solution through existing on-street lampposts. The...
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My first LRUG talk
February 13, 2019
My new year’s resolution was to do more stuff, there being two main reasons behind this: I feel happier and more fulfilled when I have a busier schedule I want to push myself and experience more things Luckily this aligns pretty nicely with ...
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Exploring how making changes to a service can have a knock on impac...
February 10, 2019
We often use tools such as risk mapping to think about potential effects of interventions in projects and how that might cause a problem in the future. These risks might be internal project risks (e.g. ‘not enough time to deliver the project’), mo...
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Using citizen data to make services better for Hackney Council
December 6, 2018
Project context: creating a single view of Hackney citizens Having an up to date and accurate record of citizens is a valuable and increasingly necessary part of providing public services. By knowing a user at the point of contact, services are a...
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“What now?” discovery phase: Show and tell #1
May 30, 2018
Unboxed has recently begun a “top-up” discovery phase with the team at Compassion in Dying to understand a core problem — people who are given a life-changing diagnosis are not accessing the information they need and want when they most need it. ...
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A life-changing diagnosis: helping patients ask the right questions...
May 23, 2018
Everyday there are people faced with the devastating news of a life-changing diagnosis. Whether receiving this news themselves, about a loved one, friend or neighbour — it’s always a difficult situation to be in. A number of organisations are rec...
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Discovery beyond a website: a new online presence for the UK NSC
April 20, 2018
Problem: a fragmented user journey Screening is the process of identifying healthy people who may have an increased chance of a disease or condition. This involves offering information, conducting tests and recommending treatment in order to redu...
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4 types of prototyping to use when creating new digital products an...
December 13, 2017
Prototyping is a core activity when designing a new digital product or service. It’s also a key part of the GDS Service Standard Alpha phase for creating new digital services within central government. Starting with a problem to solve or a new id...
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Local Government Digital Service Standard - TeaCamp #6: Assisted Di...
December 8, 2017
As a network for digital practitioners in local government, LocalGov Digital is on a mission to raise standards in web provision and the use of digital by councils across the country. The London Peer Group is aiming to focus on raising awareness ...
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#SDNGC17
November 9, 2017
“How do I explain what I do for a living to my grandmother?” This is the opening question put to us by Pascal Soboll during his presentation at this year’s Service Design Network Global Conference in Madrid. He makes an interesting point. Service ...
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Local Government Digital Service Standard - TeaCamp #5: Testing the...
October 31, 2017
As a network for digital practitioners in local government, LocalGov Digital is on a mission to raise standards in web provision and the use of digital by councils across the country. The London Peer Group is aiming to focus on raising awareness ...
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Getting your head around relative estimation
October 1, 2017
When I first heard of relative estimation and story points, I found it a challenge to really embed the concept in my mind. When you’re used to thinking in days, how do you switch to thinking about these weird arbitrary units? The fact is, develo...
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Local Government Digital Service Standard - TeaCamp #4: KPIs and me...
September 14, 2017
As a network for digital practitioners in local government, LocalGov Digital is on a mission to raise standards in web provision and the use of digital by councils across the country. The London Peer Group is aiming to focus on raising awareness ...
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What should be in your “innovation kit”?
July 21, 2017
Over the last few weeks, we’ve been running a number of Innovation Surgeries. These are two-hour sessions with product and digital teams to begin exploring how they can do things differently within their teams and organisations, introducing a sens...
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Local Government Digital Service Standard - TeaCamp #3: Digital Mar...
July 5, 2017
As a network for digital practitioners in local government, LocalGov Digital is on a mission to raise standards in web provision and the use of digital by councils across the country. The London Peer Group is aiming to focus on raising awareness ...
Getting stories to 'Done' faster: Using retrospectives and team pri...
May 22, 2017

A project I’ve worked on recently has had a recurring problem of flat burndown charts, with sprints feeling like they were becoming mini-waterfalls. Here’s an example: This isn’t good as you have no value delivered through the sprint, sign-off...

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Local Government Digital Service Standard - TeaCamp #2
May 9, 2017
As a network for digital practitioners in local government, LocalGov Digital is on a mission to raise standards in web provision and the use of digital by councils across the country. The London Peer Group is aiming to focus on raising awareness ...
More on perspectives
May 3, 2017

In my last post, I talked about the value of getting everyone’s perspectives during planning sessions (actually, I’d advocate doing so in all conversations). It just so happens that last weekend I played a great collaborative game with my sister,...

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What’s in a story point? Achieving consensus over compromise
April 28, 2017
There’s no doubt about it, sprint planning sessions can sometimes get a bit… tedious. Lots of talk and not much coding doesn’t always make for a chirpy team by lunchtime. Depending on the team size and personalities, some things which I’d assume...
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Testing in the sprint following development, should you do it?
April 6, 2017
I was with a developer friend recently who asked to pick my mind on an agile challenge he’s been experiencing at work. The problem: how do you deal with the time lag between Dev and QA, leading to devs twiddling their thumbs at the end of the spr...
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Local Government Digital Service Standard - TeaCamp #1
March 23, 2017
As a network for digital practitioners in local government, LocalGov Digital is on a mission to raise standards in web provision and the use of digital by councils across the country. Through releasing the Local Government Digital Service Sta...
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Digital Customer Programme: Show & Tell #14 with Newham Council
March 20, 2017
With increasing project momentum comes a much bigger Show & Tell space. Moving from the buzz of the Hive working space, where Show & Tells were previously held, the Digital Team have now invited colleagues to join them in their bigger work...
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Digital Customer Programme: Show & Tell #12 with Newham Council
January 17, 2017
Here we are - Show & Tell #12 with Digital Team, and the first of 2017. With a room full of refreshed attendees from the festive break, it’s time to see what’s been happening across the lastest sprint of the Digital Customer Programme with New...
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The five day design sprint with Guy’s & St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation ...
January 11, 2017
At Unboxed, we are constantly running various workshops. But that doesn’t mean we know everything. We are always up for trying something a bit different if this will ultimately allow us to serve our customers better, so we never stop reading or ex...