Client story

Supporting the digital transformation of HMPPS

HM Prisons and Probation Service (HMPPS)

Situation (the challenge)

Scrumconnect consultants are helping to tackle some of the biggest and most acute challenges in HM Prisons and Probations Service (HMPPS). With move to more digital solutions and the use of smart data, we are helping introduce more efficient management of prisons and improving the rehabilitation of those people living in the system.

There are benefits to prisons officers as well: having access to the right data at the right time can be a life saver. Scrumconnect consultants have been working to develop products and services fit for a modern prison system.

Our Activities

Once the right equipment is in the hands of staff (no mean feat on its own!) the software must be fit for purpose meaning seamless end-to-end services designed around user needs. Its' key to HMPPS that staff have access to the right products that are accessible, reliable and support their efforts to help people turn their lives around.

Scrumconnect was able to provide experts as required by HMPPS to help create high-functioning, multi-disciplinary teams including:

  • product management
  • development
  • user research
  • design and content design

Discovery work involved looking at some of the big priorities and problem areas to identify where digital services could have a significant impact and deliver value early.

Product owners set the roadmap for the products that were identified as good candidates for development while delivery managers made sure the teams had everything they needed to be able to do the work efficiently and remove any blockers.

Interaction and content designers worked with the end users - bott prison and probation staff and people in prison - to make sure the products were accessible and intuitive and did what the users needed them to do.

Using Agile methods, the teams worked to understand the real problems encountered by users to be able to design services that work. This is only possible by working collaboratively with the central department and consulting the end users as much as possible.

Teams spent invaluable time with probation officers, working out exactly how they used the current systems and understanding the pain points they are experiencing with the existing software.

For the CSRA and in-cell technology work, designers spent many hours researching with people who had just arrived at prison and sitting in-cell with people who had been using the system for years, to understand their needs and how digital products could help to change the operation and atmosphere in prisons.

All significant changes to the products are thoroughly tested with real users and changes, or iterations made as a direct result of observing them using the early prototypes.


Products our consultants worked on include:

  • A new offender management database for probation officers, replacing an old, expensive legacy product bit-by-bit
  • Designing and building a digital product to help staff make better decisions about a prisoner’s likelihood to commit a violent offence in a shared cell – the Cell Sharing Risk Assessment (CSRA)
  • Pioneering the use of in-cell technology for prisoners, helping them to self-serve and access rehabilitative and education materials in-cell

This is exciting, valuable work, that Scrumconnect is proud to have been involved with and continue to help support.