Why we need a community
There are more than 350 analytics users across government departments, agencies and arm’s length bodies (A/ALBs). They want information on analytics techniques and best practice; we at GDS want to learn what different types of users are doing so we can spread that best practice effectively.
The GDS performance analytics team gets queries about analytics every day. These are often topics of interest to many other analytics users - so it makes sense to post these discussions where everyone can see them and join in.
Communicating the analytics upgrade
The upgrade to Universal Analytics is a really good example. All government analytics users had to make some changes to continue to view organisation data, so we needed a central place where they could find out exactly what they needed to do and could ask questions.
We knew from experience that sending an email to our users wouldn’t be enough, so we:
- presented at the Departments and Agencies Analytics Show and Tell
- held workshops and hangouts
- set up a GOV.UK performance analytics Basecamp community
- produced detailed walk-throughs and short videos to help users update their accounts, and made them all available on Basecamp
We’ll be exploring Universal Analytics’ new features later in the year. We’ll be able to use these channels to update our users on improvements to reporting, using walk-throughs and examples.
Building the community
There are analytics users in many different roles across government, not just in content. That’s why we’ve set up a dedicated analytics community on Basecamp, where we’ll post details of all our training. We think we've invited everybody we should from departments and A/ALBs, but let us know if you can't access it.
What we're doing right now
We run regular introductions to using analytics for GOV.UK. These are sessions for users in departments and A/ALBs who already have an analytics account. They’re aimed at beginners, but are also useful for more experienced users.
We received a number of requests for a dedicated Search Engine Optimisation workshop, which we’ll be running on 29 September. There's clearly a lot of demand for this, as it filled up in a day.
We’re also working with the GDS content team to develop a workshop on ‘improving content with data’ for content designers who don’t have direct access to analytics.
And we’re experimenting with using hangouts to deliver training, and with running drop-in Analytics Surgeries.
So, keep an eye on Basecamp for details forthcoming sessions and how to get involved, and if you'd like to consider joining us as a senior performance analyst at GDS, we are recruiting.