Designing a financial support form for C19 self isolation


In the ever changing world that we currently live in, Blackburn with Darwen, as an area of high rates of COVID-19 was identified to trial a new Government initiative to provide financial support to those people on low incomes who need to self-isolate and whom are unable to work from home. A payment of up to £13 per day up to a maximum of £182 is available to people who have been identified and contacted by NHS Test and Trace and asked to self –isolate for up to 14 days. 

The Digital Team were asked to assist in the implementation of this scheme by providing an online application and approval process. 

The design process involved:

  • Training a new team of staff on our Digital Customer Portal and case management workflow·        
  • Deciding what was the minimum amount of data we could collect to meet the eligibility criteria
  • Exploring the potential evidences to be uploaded by the customer 
  • Creating workflow for the business to reject or approve the application
  • Creating a report for our finance team to make the payments

If you would like a copy our specification document please contact Laura Crabtree:

What did we do?

  • We had to identify exactly what was needed for the business in order to make sure the process runs smoothly for both the department and the customer.
  • We had to design an easy and informative form that customers can complete online and understand the eligibility requirements that were needed.
  • We had to be up to date with the latest legislation changes.
  • We communicated with customers and carried out user research and made changes from this.
  • We supported the business on Go Live to make sure everything ran smoothly and made further changes from the feedback provided by the business.
  • We implemented a full end to end digital process in a week.

After a few iterations we released the form through our website which was promoted via various social media and news channels.  This tied in nicely with the re-design of our COVID-19 webpages where we had created a ‘Support for Residents’ area.  Web content was written to ensure that citizens where provided with all the eligibility information that would be required so that they could assess whether they would be eligible before starting the form.

Citizens are signposted to this support by the Local Test and Trace Team and Help Hub when communicating with their contacts, demonstrating a joined up approach across the Council to delivering services to those in need. 

What have we learnt?

  • Things change daily!
  • Be prepared to listen to feedback and take this on board
  • User research is key
  • How quickly new services can be designed and delivered









By Zahida Khan on 23rd Sep 2020
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