Guide to the Local Offer
Waltham Forest's new Local Offer website went live in December 2016 and has a vast range of improvements and new features.
To help you get the most out of the new Local Offer, we have compiled this updated guide to using the site which includes the site structure, navigating the site and some top tips.
The new Local Offer site has been created using what is called a "Responsive wireframe". This means that the site will now automatically fit itself to whatever device you are using to view it.
Whether you are using a tablet, mobile or desktop the Local Offer will be easier than ever to use. This also removes the need to have a separate reduced down mobile version of the site.
Following feedback received from users of the Local Offer the site now has its on speech tool which allows users to listen to any page as audio without having to download and install additional software on your device. This tool also help ensure that the Local Offer meets current website accessibility standards.
Browse Aloud also lets you download pages as MP3 audio files, translate pages into other languages and much more.
To start using Browse Aloud now, simply click on the orange circle in the top right of this page. To access a quick guide to using the tool just click on the "?" icon on the toolbar.
Information Advice and Guidance pages or (IAG pages) are pages on the Local Offer which are dedicated to providing information around particular areas. These highly useful pages are now more accessible then ever and will appear in a new area at the top of your search results called "Related Information".
In addition to this, the new Local Offer will now also automatically return IAG pages from NHS Choices national information site too. These pages will be labelled with "Article provided by NHS Choices" at the top of them.
The Local Offer is still divided up into 5 age based sections which are 0 to 5, 5 to 11, 11 to 19, 19 to 25 and All ages. All the listings and advice and guidance pages on the Local Offer have been specifically designed to feature services that fit within that age range so you can find the support most fitting for you. For example, Children and Family Centres will only appear under the 0 to 5 age range and Employment and Training will not. For the All Ages section, we have removed all the advice and guidance information to allow you to browse the service listing more easily.
On the new Local Offer home page you can use the coloured tabs to select age range and view the sub categories without having to move around the site. When you click on one of these subcategories you will be taken to what is called a "landing page" which will display the further categories in that section and some information and advice on the subject.
If you click on the green "View All Records" button on any landing page, you will be able to view a listing of all services that come under the category that you are in. For example if you click this under the 0 to 5 years Health section you will be able to a listing of all health services for 0 to 5 year old's.
When you are viewing a listing of services you can also use the filters in the margin to fine tune the listing so you can find the most suitable service on offer.
The search bar at the top of the Local Offer still lets you search for services and Information, Advice and Guidance pages using any combination of category, keywords and location.
On the new Local Offer website the search bar will not stick to the top of the screen whilst you are using the so you can undertake searches at any point without having to scroll back to the top of the page.
Top ways to search
Category - use this if you know the type of results you want to find
Keywords - type one or more words to describe what you are looking for (e.g. housing)
Location - use this to find results which serve your location. Try a place name such as Walthamstow or postcode (E17 5SD or E4) etc.
Search results are displayed within two green tabs which will appear at the top of the results page:
Directory (number of records) - displays a list of services which match the category, keywords or location entered.
Related Content - Display all advice and guidance pages relating to the search criteria entered.
To view each set of results simply click on the relevant tab.
It is now possible to select more than one filter at the same time. If you look down the filter bar on the left you will see tick boxes next to each. To apply one of more filters to you records all you need to do is tick the boxes.