Seasonally adjusted greetings and a big thank you

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The ONS Alpha team is signing off now until 2015 but first I’d like to just say thank you to some people.

First and foremost I’d like to thank everybody who contributed to the mass of user research we did this year. Whether you filled in a survey, took part in an online test, were interviewed by one of our user researchers or gave feedback on the Alpha there is no way we could have done all we did without your support. I have never worked on a project with so many people so willing to give up their time to help. Really thank you so very much!

To the technical team at the Open Data Institute who we worked with before the Alpha ever really even got the green light and who provided us with more inspiration than I think they know and with a technical goal to work towards. Without this work I am not sure we would ever of convinced people of the direction we wanted to take so the importance can never be underestimated.

Sophie, Steve, Jon, Chris, Alex, Michelle et al at CX Partners were also incredibly important to the success of the Alpha. The collaborative work we did, especially in the early phases, really helped set the direction of the project and the pattern library is something I am very proud of.

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The guys from Methods Digital were amazing from day one – a more committed team I could not of hoped for. They really got on board with the approach we wanted to take and the objectives we had set from the minute they got to Newport and the way they embraced our commitment to a user led process was key to everything. So David, Aaron, Bren, Pastor, Ian, Myles and Andrew I’d like to just say thanks!

My team at ONS have really worked above and beyond throughout the lifetime of the Alpha. Julie has managed to keep things on track despite my somewhat chaotic tendencies, Alison returning to join us at the sharp-end of the project was a real boon as she added some insight and discipline to things when we were scrambling towards the end and the user research that Phil undertook at various points and the relationship he built with the Methods team was incredibly important. Hannah for rewriting my dodgy copy and Sarah for coming in on her leave to proof every page both deserve thanks as well. Nick and Dave helping out with design work – often with next to no notice was always appreciated. As was the analytics assistance from Al, Kate and Gareth at various points.

While everybody contributed massively I’d like to say a special thank you to Jonathan and Rob who were both shanghaied in to this project by me even before anybody knew it existed and have lived every minute of it alongside me for the last nine months or so. Cheers chaps!

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Everybody else in Digital Publishing who put up with my completely blinkered approach to the Alpha were also brilliant – while we were working on this project the Publishing team were actually doing the important work of keeping the current site going and getting the stats out!

Last but not least I would would like to thank Laura, my boss, who worked tirelessly to ensure the team had to freedom to do this in the manner we wanted and as such has written more papers and attended more meetings than I would like to do in a lifetime.

Merry Christmas everybody and have a lovely new year.

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