Co-design of public services
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
What is service co-design?
The idea is simple: nobody knows better how public services should be designed than service users and their families, friends and the communities they live in. Governance International shows you how to put this idea into practice by making effective use of co-design tools tailored to the needs of your agency.
Co-design goes way beyond traditional 'consultation'. It’s about seeing the experience of public services from the point of view of users and their communities. This triggers public service innovation. Of course, it also means taking some risks. That’s why Governance International works closely with you to make sure that the changes bring tangible improvements to public services.
The staff of the adult social care services and the members of our Stakeholder Engagement Group thoroughly enjoyed the two inhouse seminars run by Governance International. We became aware how much co-production we are already doing but also where we need to do less or do it differently. Most importantly, we all managed to find some new solutions through thinking outside the box.
Governance International 5 Steps Model to Public Service Co-Design
The Governance International 5 Steps Model to Public Service Co-Design shows how co-design tools fit together so that co-design triggers a transformation process in your agency. The 5 Steps model helps you to identify where co-design is already happening (‘Map it’), where it is most likely to be cost-effective (‘Focus it’), which citizens are most keen engage in co-design (‘People it’), how to raise awareness of the potential of co-design in your agency and services (‘Market it’) and how to scale it up (‘Grow it’).
Governance International can take you through this 5 Steps Model to ensure co-design works for you.
What are the benefits of co-design?
Seeing public services "outside in" leads to revealing insights. Who would have thought that what most elderly people want is NOT 'independent living'? Most elderly people actually tell us they are desperate for contacts and friendships – they want 'interdependent' living. This insight has prompted health and social care providers in the Netherlands to create new remote services WITH the elderly, provided in a network which makes them feel better – and which also helps them to help each other. (click to read full case study)
User co-design can pep up council and public agency websites, too. So many websites are dull, daunting and difficult. They have been designed FOR users but certainly not BY them. It doesn’t have to be like this – e.g. the adult care website of Stockport Council shows what open and inclusive government means in practice: not necessarily more information but relevant information! It has been designed WITH service users and Stockport Council estimates that it has already saved £300,000 by cutting down avoidable contacts. (click to read full case study)
|So when users help to design services, it brings: |
What are the risks?
The idea of co-design is obvious – and that is why it is already widely used in so many different forms in the private sector.
However, co-design is far from being simple. It does not mean asking everybody about everything – it has to be focused. Co-design won’t necessarily involve EVERYONE among your service users and communities.
In co-design, you have to identify those who most know and most care about services. It is the input of this group of ‘expert co-designers’ which is likely to be most innovative and valuable in changing out-of-date service approaches. In order to find the 'expert co-designers', some innovative market research is needed – Governance International helps you to find and work with this key group.
At a time when budget cuts oblige public agencies to think more radically, explore with us how to turn your services upside down and inside-out, so that they become better for users and cheaper for communities.
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