If you’re looking for funding for a digital service, these principles can help you write an effective bid. The funders involved in this work all recognised the value of these principles in delivering effective digital services.
Four principles in particular are helpful when pulling a bid together. Use them as a checklist of things that show your funder you have completed the right research and have the right approach to deliver a successful digital project.
Start with user needs and keep them involved. All funders have more applications than funds, so they need to know that your proposal is really meeting a service user’s need. Can you articulate the evidence from user research that identifies a need among your service users?
Understand what’s out there already. Funders need to make the best use of their money, so they need to know what they are funding is really needed, and isn’t duplicating what’s out there already.
Build the right team. You need to give the funder confidence that you will be able to deliver the project through having built the right team of technical, subject and user expertise.
Build for sustainability. Do you have a clear and realistic understanding of the costs of your proposal – taking into account now just the costs to launch the project but ongoing costs?
Start with user needs, and keep them involved
I have researched directly with my user group to understand their needs from their perspective. This means understanding their behaviours, attitudes and needs. For example, I’ve conducted semi-structured interviews with users or undertaken or contextual research
I have a plan to continue to engage with my intended service users over time, such as conducting usability studies
Things you might have:
User needs based on user research
Jobs to be done
A research plan for ongoing usability testing
Tools you can use:
User needs – the Government Digital Service has great guidance on identifying and writing up user needs
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