Department seeks support finding research participants from potentially excluded groups
The Home Office is seeking to conduct more research on use of its services by those who lack skills or confidence in using digital technology, or face impairments in doing so.
The department is looking for a supplier partner to provide participants to take part in “user research days for services being developed by the Home Office”.
The contract notice specifies that at least half of those testing new services should have “low levels of digital/online skills and confidence”.
This should encompass people who “use computers infrequently, don’t own a device to access the internet, [or] need help to complete an online application”. But also those who are “willing to try or learn new things on a computer”, the notice adds.
The department wishes its user-research groups to “cover all types of impairments, both mild and severe… [including] sensory, physical, communication, cognitive, [and] disease”.
The notice contextualises the need for including these people in user research by stating that there are “9.2 million adults in the UK who have never used the internet”.
Almost a third of those earn less than £10,400, while 55% have no qualifications, and 60% are aged over 65, the notice adds.
The department expects to spend between £15,000 and £20,000 with the chosen supplier over a two-year period. Bids are open until midnight on 29 August.
Research is expected to take place nationwide and, in each case, a minimum of four participants will be required.