We are building a Research Operations team in DfE, to provide services and support to user researchers across the department.

The goal of the team is to reduce the time and effort you spend on non-specialist user research tasks, allowing you to spend more time focused on delivering the highest quality insights into your teams. The team also aims to reduce the cost of user research, and reduce risks to you, the department, and our users.

Contact the team in the #research-ops-support channel in DfE Slack (opens in a new tab), or individually using the team details below.

Services and support for user researchers

Support accessing our participant recruitment supplier

We have a contracted agency to recruit participants for research. The Research Operations team can help you access this supplier, if you want support.

Participant recruitment panels (private beta)

We are building our own participant recruitment panels, to help recruit some of our harder-to-reach user groups for research.

Currently we are trialling this in the Services for Schools portfolio, with a panel of school leaders and schools business professionals. If you are a user researcher working in Services for Schools, you may be able to access this panel.

During 2024 we plan to continue growing this panel, with a particular focus on users with access needs and from other under-represented groups.

We will also begin to build a panel in our Vulnerable Children and Families portfolio, recruiting social workers, nursery workers and childminders, SEND professionals and other users of DfE services in childrens' social care, early years and Family Hubs.

New starter onboarding

When you join DfE, Research Operations will ensure you are added to mailing lists, Slack channels, and invites for community events. They will also arange an onboarding session with the head of user research.

Your line manager or, if you are a contractor, the person managing your statement of work, should let the team know you are joining DfE. If you've not heard from the team in your first few days, contact them to let them know you're here.

Personal data management support

When you are planning the personal data management for your project, Research Operations can support you, or signpost you to the correct support team (e.g. the Office of the Data Protection Officer team, or the Knowledge Information Management team)

Other support and services

Contact Research Operations about:

Research Operations also support the head of user research to deliver other projects across the user research profession roadmap.

Meet and contact the team

Contact the team in the #research-ops-support channel in DfE Slack (opens in a new tab).

Sara Yardley

Research operations participant recruitment specialist (Services for Schools)

Contact Sara in DfE Slack (opens in a new tab)