Functional Design Specification for a Self-Service Portal

Demand reduction through self-service on-line


Dr Susan Priest -
CEO at Folkestone and Hythe District Council

Heather Lumby - Exec Director at iESE


Functional Design Specification
for a Self-Service
Customer Service Portal


Folkestone and Hythe District Council is the local authority for Folkestone, Hythe and the Romney Marsh areas. The council recognises the importance of maintaining a quality environment for its residents and visitors alike, including heritage and conservation areas. These services also ensure that the environment is fit to welcome an increasing number of tourists to its pristine beaches every year. Folkestone district attracted more than 5 million tourists in 2018.

Despite the many attractions of this well-connected coastal district in Kent, austerity and reductions in the distribution of central government taxes has left the council needing to make savings of £1.8 million. To facilitate these savings, the council planned a significant IT investment programme that, if used correctly, would direct demand away from the internal functions and have service users self-serve through a portal. The reduction in demand could then be taken as a cashable productivity benefit.



Andrew worked in association with iESE, a leading Public Sector Transformation Consultancy practice, to rebuild internal processes, organisational structures and ways of working in line with principles of self-service design.



The work fully engaged with staff across the organisation to deliver a concept model that was then incorporated into the functional design specification of the new IT system. The end result quantified the savings available and delivered a road map to implementation.