2021: Reflecting on our achievements this year

Photo of Hilary Stephenson

Managing Director

5 minute read

As Christmas arrives we take the opportunity to reflect on some of the highlights of the past twelve months

The festivities are fast approaching, and before we get stuck right into the mulled wine and mince pies, we’ve taken a moment to reflect with gratitude on some of the opportunities of the past year.  As with 2020, 2021 has been unpredictable and in parts challenging, but we couldn’t be prouder of our positive learning and growth and the way our team has delivered throughout. So, as we get ready to celebrate and take a well-earned break, we wanted to share some of our personal highlights of the year, including some outcome statements of work we’re proud of delivering social impact and digital inclusion across a variety of sectors. We’ll also be looking ahead to 2022, teasing some of the very exciting things we’ve been planning for the new year.

This year we were involved in some fantastic projects.

In 2021 we ...

Helped people get access to vital mental health support.

  • We continued to work with Mind to help those with mental health needs and their families get the support they need by improving digital content and services for children and young people, and by making it easier for them to access and use local Mind services during the pandemic.

Helped people feel secure in their financial planning.

  • We worked with Nest, the UK’s largest pension scheme, on human-centred service transformation, to help people plan for a better retirement.

Helped design medical devices and support services to allow people to live independently.

  • We have tested a number of prototype devices, information and packaging for innovative medical products, through inclusive usability testing with patients and healthcare professionals

Helped teachers with relationships and sex education for students with special educational needs.

  • We worked with the Department for Education to plan and create content that teachers and school staff find easy to use when they’re working with children with special educational needs.

Helped design new health pathways for people with MS, Dementia and Parkinson's.

  • We have been working with patients and citizen scientists to assess new clinical pathways for patients with progressive neurological conditions.

Helped scientists translate patient safety information for COVID submissions.

  • We worked to design and develop a global translation app that was put to immediate use for a higher volume of patient safely submissions, as part of the COVID response. We continue to explore how machine language translation can be used to aid the rapid communication of unstructured content, including how MS Teams can be used to make meetings more inclusive.

Helped GPs understand the importance of accessibility and inclusion.

  • We did some vital user research across Greater Manchester into the patient experience of the GP websites, apps and digital engagement platforms used extensively as a result of COVID. This research and parallel accessibility assessments will feed further primary care commissioning and digital service delivery.

Helped get people into teaching.

  • We supported the Department for Education’s recruitment drive to attract new teachers, helping teachers from overseas find roles in the UK, and assisting newly qualified teachers when they start their first teaching job.

Helped people feel safe and supported in their homes.

  • We extended our digital partnership with Plus Dane to reimagine their digital services and website, with insights from tenants and internal stakeholders.

In 2021, we also became Nexer Digital!

  • One of the most significant bits of news from our year...In February we officially changed our name from Sigma to Nexer Digital. Read more from our Managing Director Hilary about why we made the decision to change, and enjoy some of the creative new logos suggested by the team ;-)

Looking ahead to 2022

There are plenty of exciting developments planned for 2022, including continuing the trajectory of 2021 with new roles, new services and a new collection of events through the course of the year. We’re also delighted to announce the welcome return of our flagship Camp Digital Conference on the 23rd of June. It’s been a real shame to miss out on the event in 2020 and 2021, so it’s wonderful to bring it back with an inspirational line-up of speakers soon to be announced.  Stay tuned too for tickets on release very soon, and further announcements and details on the website and social media over the next couple of months. In the meantime, head to our Camp Digital 2019 archives to take a look at what’s in store.

 

Background is the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester, with text reading Camp Digital overlaid.
Molly and Bella sit by the Christmas tree in our office

Back to the mulled wine and mince pies

And so concludes our whistlestop tour of our work over the last year. We're ending this update on a lovely festive note with a fab photo of our very own Molly and Bella by the office Christmas tree. Here's to 2022.

Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year from all of us!