Scalable Approach to Vulnerability Via Interoperability (SAVVI)


  1. Project outputs
  2. Project timeline

This project, led by Tameside and Sedgemoor Councils, aims to produce national data standards that result in reduced hardship for vulnerable people and households, by improving a locality’s ability to make use of data to support them – so that they can then promote a coordinated multi-agency response.

The SAVVI framework has been built by the project establishing how councils use data to find vulnerable people during lock-down and potential homelessness, and Information Governance to access secondary use of data to find vulnerable people.

The project has also worked extensively via workshops and presentations with partner councils, central government (DWP, GDS, NHS Digital, Cabinet Office) and Voluntary Community Service organisations to build wide-ranging consensus for the SAVVI framework across government.

In its first phase, the SAVVI project formed a partnership with the Vulnerability Risk Index project (now called Societal Early Needs App) as there was significant overlap between the two projects. They split the allotted £110,000 of funding from the C-19 Challenge in August 2020 between them.

In its second phase, the SAVVI project continued to work with the SENA team using the SAVVI standard within their project. They have published a case study of this experience to share the Huntingdonshire experience, and to inspire other councils looking to adopt a similar SAVVI-style approach to finding and supporting vulnerable people in their area.

The team has also been working with North Yorkshire County Council to produce a case study for School Readiness.

Project outputs

The SAVVI team has developed a SAVVI Playbook to help organisations design and implement their own SAVVI project. The playbook is a toolkit of lots of useful standardised tools to help them along the way. These tools include:

  1. An end to end process for a vulnerability project
    The SAVVI process is the suggested end-to-end stages for identifying then mobilising support to vulnerability within the community.
  2. Open data standards for vulnerability
    The SAVVI standard is an open data standard. Open standards for data are documented, reusable agreements that help people and organisations to publish, access, share and use better quality data. This means people can get the information they need more quickly and easily, and helps to create joined up services.
  3. A catalogue to navigate Information Governance for vulnerability data
    The SAVVI catalogue contains useful information about the vulnerability data that have been used in SAVVI projects so far. Where organisations have used SAVVI to run a vulnerability initiative, they can use the catalogue to share their experiences.

Case studies

The project has published case studies that share councils’ experience of engaging with the SAVVI method, to inspire other councils looking to adopt a similar SAVVI-style approach to finding and supporting vulnerable people in their area:

Project timeline

October 2020

The SAVVI project receives £54,000 from the Local Digital C-19 Challenge.

February 2021

The project receives £90,000 of follow-on funding from the Local Digital Fund to continue their work. During the next phase, the project will test and prove what has been built. They have identified 2 test subjects:

  1. Huntingdonshire District Council’s SENA (Societal Early Need App) – this is a Risk Index and risk determination algorithm from a set of data sources that has already been developed. It is being re-cast onto an open platform. It uses a Case Management System to manage engagement with residents.
  2. North Yorkshire County Council – they are at an early stage in their development, but are seeking guidance on shaping their response to coronavirus-related vulnerabilities, although their availability of data sources coupled with SAVVI process could steer this

SAVVI aims to incorporate these case studies back into its Minimum Viable Product (its playbook of tools on and iterate accordingly.

The project also plans for wider engagement with other third parties to assist with benefits realisation, analytics, information governance and further promotion.

July 2021

The team held their inaugural SAVVI Tech Working group, hosted by TechUK, to provide a mutual forum for SAVVI and the tech industry to engage and collaborate on SAVVI data standards.

The team presented at Digital Leaders Week 2021.

The SAVVI Information Governance Quality Assurance Group met for its quarterly meeting.

August - November 2021

The team conducted ‘deep dives’ of the SAVVI standard with suppliers: SAP, Xantura and Liquid Logic, in addition to MoJ BOLD (Ministry of Justice Better Outcomes Linked Data), NHS Digital, and Crisis.

October 2021

The SAVVI Information Governance Group hosted a ‘Access to Health Barriers’ workshop, with representatives from government and the NHS.

November 2021

The project team launched their mailing list and delivered their End of phase 2 Show and Tell.

December 2021

The SAVVI SENA case study is published.

January 2021

The North Yorkshire case study is published.

March 2022

The project is awarded £348,975 in follow-on funding through the Continuous Funding Model.

The project will use the funding to implement the new data standard with Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the Ministry of Justice, as well as seek formal recognition of the standard from the Government Digital Service, Office of National Statistics and NHS.

The team was really pleased to announce their success at being awarded funding for SAVVI Phase 3. Since then they have published two blogs — the first outlining their plans for SAVVI Phase 3 and the second outlining the partnerships that the team will continue to move forward with in the next phase of work.

Following the announcement, the team has started working with the GMCA and Better Outcomes Linked Data (BOLD) to further plan the implementation of the SAVVI standard in their programmes.

The team is now focussed on mapping the high level deliverables and workstreams needed to deliver Phase 3.

Paul Davidson from the SAVVI project presented a talk at Public Sector Insight Week on Tuesday 8 March. Watch a recording of the event on YouTube.

April-May 2022

The team is looking for key individuals to lead SAVVI, both within the project and towards sustainability beyond LDCU funding. You can read more in this blog post.

The team have been recruiting for a number of new roles, including SAVVI Coach / Project Support and SAVVI Data Standards Development. These roles will help support implementation of the standard within projects. Another role for Information Governance Expertise will be out shortly. This role will help design the engagement platform and drive forward the information governance community.

The team is planning to commission a supplier to do some research into their options paper before beginning development on their engagement platform. This is following a recommendation from LDCU during the project’s continuous funding bid that they should investigate ‘out of the box’ solutions before creating their own.

For Phase 2, the project team has appointed their coach from Red Quadrant and their technical specialist from Porism.

Paul Davidson, Product Owner, delivered a short presentation at Local Digital’s South West Roadshow on Tuesday 24 May to celebrate the success of the team.

Several members of the team attended the i-Network Innovation Awards on Thursday 19 May, and were joined by Sarah and Paul from the Local Digital team who both presented an award.

June 2022

Shelley Heckman, Project Manager, presented at the Local Digital North West Roadshow on Wednesday 15 June, which received some great feedback from attendees.

The first SAVVI leadership meeting took place on Tuesday 21 June and was led by Phil Swann, Head of Great Manchester Combined Authority. The project team is really pleased with how this went, as having such a senior and geographically-dispersed group of people who are keen to drive forward interoperable data for vulnerabilities suggests a movement bigger than the project or standard.

The team is also planning to reach out to their working groups and stakeholders to shape their understanding of what software is already available, before they begin creating a bespoke solution.

July 2022

The project has appointed three new team members for Phase Three: a SAVVI Coach, Tech Support and Information Governance (IG) Support. In this phase, they aim to deploy SAVVI for real and make it self-sustaining. Read more about the Phase Three team in this blog post.

The project would also like to introduce the SAVVI Engagement Service, which is how they work with partner projects to tackle vulnerability. With Phase Three of the project underway, the team are delighted to be working with three partner projects as they deploy the SAVVI Playbook. The engagement team will help those projects to on-board SAVVI and test out the new SAVVI Engagement Service. They will use the learnings to scale up how they engage with other projects who want to use the SAVVI Playbook to tackle vulnerability and hardship. Find out more about the Engagement Service in this blog post.

The team have also blogged about their experience at the Local Digital Roadshow, which includes an overview of the presentations given by Shelley Heckman and Paul Davidson.

Andrew Humphries, the recently appointed SAVVI coach, has begun working with the different organisations that are beginning to implement the SAVVI standards — including the Greater Manchester Combined Authority — as part of their initial scoping. He will be presenting back to the core team in two week’s time on the vulnerabilities these projects are addressing, as well as their progress to date and the intended values and learnings for each project.

August 2022

The team has now created ‘product descriptions’ for each part of this phase to capture requirements for delivery and the lead for each part. These include SAVVI implementation within projects for Wigan Council Civil Contingencies Project, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), GData Accelerator for Supporting Families Programme, and Better Outcomes for Linked Data (BOLD) with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), led by SAVVI coach Andrew Humphries. This will be iterated as needed throughout the phase.

Furthermore, SAVVI Data Enablers Group has been scheduled for Tuesday 13 September. Made up of information governance professionals, data analysts and data project practitioners, the group will promote the legal, ethical and transparent use of data to assess and support vulnerable people and households.

September 2022

he project team has successfully developed the SAVVI Declaration based on feedback from the SAVVI leadership group, wider discussions with colleagues and through SAVVI projects. It captures the common problems that we all face as we tackle vulnerability with data, and a set of strategic actions that will aim to address the current shortfalls.

The team is now seeking co-authorship from the SAVVI leadership group and invitations have been sent this week for a review meeting on Friday 7 October.

Paul Davidson, SAVVI product owner, is completing the ‘Configuration Tool’, a prototype of a possible future engagement platform that will be shared with current SAVVI implementation projects (GMCA, Wigan) for feedback before progressing further.

October 2022

In early October, the core SAVVI team participated in a facilitated session to explore progress of the project and next steps for self-sustainability. This provided a good foundation for the SAVVI leadership meeting where Phil Swann, Director for Digital at Greater Manchester Combined Authority, and representatives from DLUHC, the NHS, Tech UK and local authorities met to discuss co-authorship of the new SAVVI declaration. There was some great initial feedback in the session and now further feedback is being sought from attendees.