We and many others have made our love for Government Digital Services (GDS) quite clear. 

From its UX, to its style guide, to its place in changing the perception of the web.

However, I thought it worth quickly flagging up an interesting post on Reddit that shows just how far GDS has come and the standards it is setting.

In the post a redditor from the Home Office highlights a poor experience and a developer from the GOV.UK team fixes it within a day.

If you want to hear from Mike Bracken, executive director of digital at GDS, get yourself to the Festival of Marketing in November.

So here’s the post on the UK subreddit.

And here’s a screenshot of the exchange (click to enlarge).

uk subreddit

It would be easy to look at this thread and write an article about agility, digital strategy and transformation, but I’ll let the redditors do it for me. 

The Beliskner on openness

And for anyone wondering the gov.uk is not keeping anything secret about how they operate. All the code is open source on github… and they often speak at conferences and gatherings, the last one I saw them at was Front End London. Their web work has been deemed so good I believe New Zealand government have forked the entire gov.uk codebase for their own version.

alexmuller on technology

If they are actually letting teams use the technologies best suited to their area, then wow. Absolutely.

Farnz on ‘agile’

‘Agile’ the buzzword is going out of fashion – too many of us have experiences of people saying “we’re Agile!” or “we follow an Agile process!” meaning “we think we sound cool if we say that”.

Lots of the underlying behaviour patterns that Agile was short hand for are still popular, though. Things like “don’t try to build perfection straight away”, “don’t build anything you don’t know you’re going to need” and “each time you get something useful, release it to your internal test team” are good advice, but (for example) rigidly following the Scrum methodology (one form of Agile) is only sensible if Scrum makes sense for your project.

In large part, each methodology boils down to skilled engineers writing down how they tackle certain projects, so that less skilled engineers can duplicate the process and learn from it (and hopefully become skilled engineers over time).

Ftumsh on GOV.UK

The gov.uk blog is a breath of fresh air. Wow.