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5. Design and resource for the full lifetime of the service

  • Include changing user needs and landscape as part of the design thinking.
  • Plan for continuous improvement and provide sustainable resources for ongoing service development.
  • Avoid being caught with end-of-life technology considerations with part of your continuous development.
  • Ensure right-sized operational support is embedded by design, with appropriate ongoing resource and financial arrangements.

Why it matters

Services need to be sustainable, seeing abandoned or unsupported services undermines user trust and has the potential to confuse users, present them with out-of-date information or prevent them from accessing the correct service.

Aged services are more open to security threats and may not be available in modern browsers. When a service meets its end of life usefulness it is important to redirect users to the new service, or close it down to prevent these risks.

Services need to be continually reviewed in the digital environment, as it:

  • is rapidly and continually changing
  • has a shifting opportunity and threat landscape
  • is subject to increasing expectations on the part of users.

Make sure your service is designed and adequately resourced through its lifetime so that you can keep improving it, and it continues to meet people's needs.

How to meet this principle

At a minimum you should describe:

  • your processes for identifying and prioritising ongoing insights from user research
  • examples of user stories moving quickly from user research to deployment
  • how the technology you’re using is sustainable and how risks to its sustainability are being minimised
  • examples of the team’s ability to deploy software frequently with minimal disruption to users
  • examples of how you’re analysing user research and using it to improve your service
  • how long you expect your service to be in operation
  • your interactions with other service providers (government or private sector) to identify improvements that could streamline how real users accomplish real life tasks
  • enough staff and budget to keep improving the service as well as operating it.


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