Celebrating Digital: A Night at the BIMA Awards

We had a fantastic evening last week at the BIMA awards with our fabulous client, Advicenow, as the country’s digital community came together to celebrate the best of British digital work making a difference across business, culture and society.

The evening began with an enlightening and inspiring talk by Theo Blackwell who is London’s first Chief Digital Officer, and who is charged with rolling out the Mayor’s vision to make London the World’s smartest city.

The work we have recently undertaken with Advicenow, an independent, not-for-profit website run by the charity Law for Life, was shortlisted alongside Cancer Research UK in the Product and Service Design: Conscience category.

Of course we would have loved to have won, but being shortlisted represents the most heavyweight of industry nods to this project and the impact it is having. Congratulations to Cancer Research UK and the fantastic digital work they have done – truly worthy winners of a prestigious award.

We continue to thrive on working with clients, like Advicenow, in this case supporting them in their mission to ensure that everyone has access to clear and effective guidance to help them deal with law-related issues, while making sure that technology is used as an enabler that increases access to essential services, and not in any way a blocker for customers from low income backgrounds.

About Advicenow

Advicenow is an independent, not-for-profit website, run by the charity Law for Life: the Foundation for Public Legal Education. It provides accurate information on rights and the law. They believe that everybody should have access to clear and effective guidance to help them deal with law-related issues.

About the project

Striving to continue to offer help to as many people as possible has led to the piloting of an ecommerce venture offering a select number of paid-for expert guides with a tiered pricing structure based on ability to pay. Those who can afford to pay will be able to immediately download the guides at a fraction of the cost of a consultation with a solicitor and those who cannot afford to pay can request free access.

This will mean that those who can’t pay won’t have to but that the service can continue to improve by bolstering its funding.

The guides are also available free of charge to advice services, community groups, support services and solicitors undertaking pro bono work.

Before 2012 almost none of the site’s users were having to take issues to court without a solicitor (represent themselves), in 2015 that figure was 32.2%, rising enormously in 2017 to 67%. The guides that Advicenow are providing are helping these people to represent themselves.

To date, there have been over 1000 guides sent out and just under half of these have been sent free of charge.

This BIMA finalist position further bolsters the acknowledgement this work deserves, adding to the well-earned win at the 2017 Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards in the Access the Justice Through IT category.