Lead Organisation


The Headline


Digital, self-service Care Needs Assessment solution for both customers and staff. The approach will include business analysis, user consultation and agile technical development to deliver a focused, accessible and valuable product.

The Proposal


Adult Social Care (ASC) is currently one of the most analogue and expensive services that councils deliver. The 2014 Care Act increased the pressure particularly around assessments and with an ageing population this vital service will continue to feel the strain, and struggle if left unchanged.


Responsible officers across the country are all facing the same challenge and some councils report that only c. 20% of people who go through the assessment process receive a care package. There is still the responsibility to undertake the assessment and signpost to self-funding services and information for the other 80%. Clearly there will be variation around the country, but the challenge is ubiquitous.


Our proposal is to bring together a group of ASC service heads to undertake a piece of collective research and analysis that will look to produce a blueprint for a public sector led digital approach to care needs self assessment.


Following the business analysis and user research, and its consideration, a technical approach and product outline will result. This will itself lead to an early stage, focused product or MVP (a minimum viable product), that has value to all partners and providing a solid base from which to work and build.


Every local authority in the country has to deliver ASC and even when austerity has cut as deep as it will, ASC services will still survive. We believe digital can play a vital role in the ASC assessment process. Done with sensitivity, significant savings can be delivered, whilst still protecting the needs of the most complex and vulnerable cases.

Headline business case


Many councils we have spoken with are assessing digital tools to support the delivery of adult social care. LookingLocal has tackled the Financial Assessment side of this equation in it’s BetterCare product and know that around 40% - and up to 80% in some instances - of this audience are capable of self-serving digitally.


The costs of delivering home visits are expensive. Figures from councils we have engaged with to date are in excess of £100 per visit. There is clearly a lot at stake: significant savings potentially, but this needs to be considered against a user base which includes a significant proportion of vulnerable people, so there is no room to get it wrong.


Self-service needs assessments aren’t without their challenges. We have to acknowledge that safeguarding concerns exist, but tackle them knowing these are hurdles we have no choice but to overcome. The current processes are unsustainable with current budget pressures. Instead we need to work towards adopting tools for customers to be able to assess themselves and introduce practices which ensure vulnerable customers get the support they need.

Project description


Led by public-sector analysts and innovative technology designers/developers, this proposed work will deliver:

  • In-depth analysis to the challenges involved in ASC needs assessment process;
  • A high level blueprint for a collaborative public-sector led ASC needs assessment and care information solution;
  • A Minimum Viable Product for a digital self-service/assisted self-service approach to the Care Needs Assessments processes.

What are we asking for?


  • We believe there is around 70 days of work for the core analysis and development required. In addition to we see 3 days per LA for the local analysis component;
  • We believe a grouping of five LAs is needed to make this collaborative approach worthwhile*;
  • Lead ASC officer involvement in one day multi-partner workshop;
  • One day of on-site access to local ASC teams for interviews and information gathering;
  • Access to ASC assessment processes, systems and overview of caseload statistics;
  • Active involvement via email, telephone and online groups to ensure information delivery and report success;
  • Active involvement and contribution to the development, review and report processes.


No of LA’s involved

Core Costs (per LA)

Local Costs (per LA)

Costs per LA






*Participants in the consultation process would be offered ‘early adopter’ status for any resulting digital solution with a reduced financial commitment.


Twelve to sixteen weeks.

Related Projects/Work of Note


BetterCare focuses on redesigning and digitising the Financial Assessment for Care and was driven by Kirklees Council in the first phase. The resulting MVP - and now full product - was based on a significant piece of in-depth analysis undertaken from all stakeholder perspectives.


This understanding of the end-to-end process, challenges and customer behaviour insight laid on top of a deep and valuable understanding of both digital tools and online user habits, which led to a solution that will save £400k in the first year of deployment. and a reduction in failed care packages from 24% to 17% in its first 8 weeks of implementation.


The BetterCare solution is now live in Kirklees Council and is in the process of local analysis and commissioning at other councils.



Jane Hancer


07932 742661