StatusCake & UK Local Government Digital Service Standard

The United Kingdom’s Local Government Digital Service Standard was set up to create a “Service Standard” that as well as applying across central government could equally be applied to local governments throughout the UK.

The Service Standard, or Local Government DSS, sets out 15 different areas in which local authorities can strive to achieve excellent in delivering digital services.  In particular the 15 points help UK local government teams to deliver good quality, user centred digital services and which are value for money.  The DSS framework has already been proven to produce benefits to local authorities.  The standard is also measurable, meaning it is easy for teams delivering digital services to assess compliance and whether they pass across the 15 points.

StatusCake is already used by many local authorities throughout the UK, as well as central government departments.  Our customers in government have recognised that using StatusCake helps them achieve many of the points set out in the DSS framework.

Make a Plan for Being Offline

Digital Service Standard: Make a plan for the event of the digital service being taken temporarily offline, and regularly test.

This point within the DSS is designed to ensure that you, as one of the team in charge of delivery of digital services within local government, have planned for all kinds of website and digital service downtime; whether this be scheduled maintenance – i.e. planned downtime, or where an unexpected issues arises and services go down; unplanned downtime.

StatusCake can assist in your planning for digital services being offline.  StatusCake will alert you when your sites and services go down unexpectedly, however our maintenance windows allow you to pre-plan scheduled updates and maintenance so that when you do bring your services down intentionally, downtime alerts aren’t triggered.

The DSS framework also requires you to think about a communications plan to inform users, as well as your own team, about services being degraded or offline.  Our StatusCake Pages product allows you to post updates on service status, as well as have users subscribe for notifications when certain events are triggered or resolved.

With StatusCake you’ll be able to show that you are regularly checking the resilience of your digital services, that they’re online and operating correctly.  Our StatusCake page speed testing also will let you test that the user experience is as is expected.  When your website or services take too long to load and user experience is impacted we will alert you.

Our reporting means that you can also keep records of the level of uptime you’ve achieved, enabling you to measure any SLAs you have in place, and track improvement over a period of time.

The UK Government Service Design Manual “Uptime and availability: keeping your service online” sets out how you can ensure that the measures you are putting in place pass point 11 (making a plan for being offline).

You may also find the section on “Monitoring the status of your service” useful.

If you have any questions on how we can help you achieve point 11 (making a plan for being offline) please do contact us.

Identify Performance Indicators

Digital Service Standard: Identify performance indicators for the service, incorporating existing indicators and publishing to a performance platform, if appropriate.

Within any business, and local government is no different, it is imperative that the digital service delivery team and other stakeholders understand how your online services are performing.

StatusCake will be able to provide you with performance indicators for the uptime and availability of your digital services, as well as metrics around page-speed load; something which can impact end-user experience significantly.

You’ll be able to evaluate with our reports how your service is performing at any one moment in time, and then use StatusCake data to identify areas for improvement.

The DSS framework makes it clear that as a local authority you need to think about who is seeing performance data, as well as thinking about the best way in which you can share it.  At StatusCake we can assist you with this process by making performance data not only available in report, but shareable through our public reporting pages, our dashboard, and through StatusCake Pages.  By using StatusCake in this way stakeholders will always know where they have to go in order to find this information.

This is an important area for anyone responsible for UK local authority digital services delivery and guidance can be found on the UK Government Service Design Manual on not just identifying performance indicators, but also alongside collecting performance data, and report performance data

Evaluate appropriate tools and systems & Choosing digital analytics tools

Digital Service Standard: Evaluate what tools and systems will be used to build, host, operate and measure the service, and how to procure them, looking to reuse existing technologies where possible.

As the delivery team of digital services in your local government we know it is imperative that you find the most suitable tools and systems.    We can help you show that StatusCake meets your use case and how some of our other UK local authority customers have been using it.  Our service, compared with our competitors, also offers in the majority of use cases the best possible value for money.

The Gov.UK Service Manual sets out the criteria by which you should refer to when choosing digital analytics tools.

At StatusCake we can help you address all of the following points so that you can ensure you’ve met the criteria.  In broad terms we will ensure that StatusCake:

  • Has the right features and functions for the use case you’re looking for &  Offers the best value for money

You can find out more about all of our features here, and how our pricing offers the best value for money in the uptime and server monitoring space.

  • Offers you the best possible support

We are UK based and our support is industry leading.  Our median first response time including outside UK office hours is 22 minutes.  So if you’d like to know how we compare to other vendors in the uptime monitoring space please just ask us.