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Week 3: Office days

Photo of a projector screen showing a slide with the text “Joining up teams through working in the open. Working in the open is not just about demonstrating progress, but also talking openly about mistakes, changes, and things you’ve learnt. It’s also about enabling good governance and assurance. It gives colleagues and stakesholders a window onto your work that drives up quality, helps unblock, and manages your dependenceis. Work in the open by being open about the work.”

This week I spent three whole days talking to people in the office and not just on Teams calls. It was like the before times.

I started the week with an induction for one of NHS England’s offices in London. It’s nice. There’s plenty of space, the monitors work, and a good canteen too. Needs more posters on the walls though.

I was lucky to bump into Matt Edgar, who gave me some sage advice about navigating the NHS and some pointers for other digital teams who’d successfully developed agile ways of working.

On Wednesday the digital vaccination teams had a day together up in Leeds. It was a great opportunity to meet the other teams, discuss roadmaps and priorities, and be inspired by the wider vision.

Our director Rachel Hope gave us all a great reminder that our mission is about improving health outcomes, and not about products, services or technology.

I was also pleased to see a great slide about working in the open. I hope to both demonstrate this and benefit from seeing the work of others.

We also had a (virtual) ‘all hands’ later in the week with the wider portfolio of digital prevention services, with a rapid-fire introduction from all the product managers.

In the feedback section asking for future session ideas, a lot of us suggested demos or ‘show the thing’, so I look forward to those!

I’m still getting my head around the product I’m working on, but was pleased to attend more user research sessions, and to be able to start making some tentative suggestions (amongst asking a lot of possibly annoying questions).

NHS acronyms of the week

I try to note down any new acronyms I hear in meetings.

This week, I learnt of:

  • ODS codes (Organisation Data Service): these codes identify organisations working in or with the NHS
  • CIS2 (Care Identity Service): an authentication system for NHS staff
  • FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources): a standard for sending healthcare data between services

Elsewhere across government, I was interested by:

Bank holiday weekend ahead. Enjoy!