Typically, we will always start with low fidelity prototypes, in word documents or on Lucid.

We can then use various types of content to communicate and engage with our users and offer support, such as:

  • written content
  • video
  • images
  • graphics
  • templates

Each of our channels has the capability of housing these content types. User needs should direct the creation of content, what is created, and at which point in the journey it should be delivered to users to support them.

We typically procure videos, graphics, images and marketing materials from external providers. Some teams can produce these types of content, but it depends on the requirements.

Channels we use

GOV.UK mainstream content

This is content for the general public and is managed by Government Digital Services (GDS) and Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO).

DfE works with GDS to produce content for parents and carers for things like looking for childcare or a school place.

Examples of mainstream DfE services:

GOV.UK specialist content

This content is managed by DfE’s digital communications team. We use this to publish statutory guidance, policy papers and detailed guides for professionals. We also publish some guidance for parents and press releases.

Example of specialist content:

Plan your relationships, sex and health curriculum (opens in new tab)

Services hosted on the service domain

These services are for the general public, and are developed and managed by teams within DfE.

Example of a service on service.gov.uk:

Apply for teacher training (opens in new tab)

Services hosted on the education domain

These services are for professionals and are developed and managed by teams within DfE. Typically, services will live on the education domain whilst in development and then may move to GOV.UK once 'live' and nationally available.

Example of a service on education.gov.uk:

Help for early years providers (opens in new tab)

Campaign sites

These are managed by Government Communications Service (GCS) (opens in new tab) (some are managed by third-party providers) they're aimed at the general public and are used over a specific time period with a specific objective.

Example of campaign site:

Teach in further education (opens in new tab)

Contact Clare Arolker at Clare.Arolker@education.gov.uk or Indira Pereira-Lopes at Indira.Pereira-Lopes@education.gov.uk if you think that a single page campaign site (opens in new tab) will best meet your user's needs.

For campaign sites, digital communications team will:

  • provide advice and guidance on your application
  • submit your request to GDS
  • give 'Head of Digital' approval

Communication channels

We also use several communication channels to engage with different audiences and direct users to our services and guidance.

These include:

  • GOV.UK Notify - for notifications (mails sent within the service)
  • Intranet and internal services (DfE staff)
  • Media and Education Blogs (media and professionals)
  • Sector newsletters (professionals and stakeholders)
  • Social media (media, professionals, public and stakeholders)

As content designers we often have to join up user journeys across multiple channels, both on and offline, to deliver services. We're often comunicating with our regional networks and professionals we support to understand the benefits of content design for our users.

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