GLRO20-08

Type of decision: 
GLRO decision
Code: 
GLRO20-08
Date signed: 
22 February 2019
Decision by: 
Mary Harpley, Chief Officer of the GLA

Executive summary

The London Mayoral and Assembly elections of 2020 require the development of the London Elects website, which will be the primary digital service for providing information to a variety of stakeholders.

Decision

That the Greater London Returning Officer approves:

• The appointment of a digital agency, following a competitive procurement in accordance with the GLA’s Procurement Guidance and the Contracts and Funding Code, to develop a new londonelects.org.uk website.

• The allocation of up to £150,000 for the development of the new website.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

Since 2008 a dedicated website www.londonelects.org.uk has provided a wide range of information and services relating to the election of the Mayor of London and the London Assembly. The current version of the website has been largely unchanged since 2012.

Given the advances in design and digital technologies, and new regulatory requirements on accessibility of digital services since 2012, it is appropriate that the current digital service be reviewed, and a new service developed.

Objectives and expected outcomes

Objectives and expected outcomes

• To carry out a competitive procurement managed by the TfL Procurement Service.
• To appoint a full-service digital agency.
• Develop a new londonelects.org.uk website that fits the needs of the identified stakeholders.

The Procurement

The procurement is being carried out using the Crown Commercial Service’s digital suppliers and outcomes framework; and managed by a TfL Procurement manager and a panel made up of GLA officers from the Digital and Technology teams.

Managing delivery

The development will be managed by the Technology Group and Digital Team staff, who have an excellent track record of working together to deliver digital products and services.

The team will use Agile methods to deliver the new site, working in accordance with the Government Digital Service’s (GDS) Service Manual as well as working to the Local Government Digital Services Standard (LGDSS).

Additionally, the delivery team will work in full accordance with the GLA’s governance framework, particularly in relation to managing risks.

Equality comments

Accessibility will be at the heart of the new website.

User research will be conducted as an integral part of the development to ensure that the site identifies a wide range of user classes and includes representatives from these classes during user testing.

The new site will also be constructed to fully meet the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018, which aim to make websites (and mobile applications) of public sector bodies more accessible to users, particularly persons with disabilities.

Other considerations

Key risks and issues

The current website, while fit for purpose for the 2012 and 2016 elections, now requires a complete overhaul.

The review of the website following the 2016 election also made a number of recommendations as to improvements for the 2020 website.

Historically, the londonelects.org.uk website has attracted a large audience in the lead up to the elections and Count day. The new site therefore needs to be available from Autumn 2019 so that thorough testing can be carried out and early engagement commenced.

There is a very high volume of digital work the GLA is currently progressing with the Digital Team and Technology Group staff carrying a high workload. Capacity will need to be freed to enable the londonelects website to be developed to the usual high standards.

Impact assessments and consultations

Following the 2016 elections, a GLA review was carried out on the impact of the website which noted that the londonelects.org.uk proved popular with a 51% increase in usage compared to 2012.

A consultation was held within the GLA in late 2018, including with the Deputy GLRO, which reinforced the findings of the 2016 review; and favoured creating a new site as opposed to making changes to the existing one.

Financial comments

The expenditure of £150,000 is to cover the development costs of the London Elects website. This expenditure will be contained within the 2019/20 Elections Budget.

Activity table

Activity

Timeline

Procurement of contract

Jan – Feb 2019

Announcement

End of Feb 2019

Delivery Start Date

March 2019

Delivery End Date

July 2019

Project Closure

May 2020


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