What we do after you submit a Helpdesk request

The Helpdesk takes the following steps after receiving requests from FCDO advisers and World Bank staff:

Set up a SCOPING call

After submitting your request, you will receive an email response from the Helpdesk team within 48 business hours to acknowledge receipt and set up a video/phone call to discuss your request(s).

During this call, we will ask you to share any relevant context (e.g. background on the current stage of the programme, the decision point that the request response will inform, etc.). We may also ask you to clarify your questions, to make sure that we understand them and that they fall into our areas of expertise. We will share our initial thinking on the support that the Helpdesk can provide, as well as available evidence, knowledge, and resources that we will draw on to respond to your request.

Offer existing resources

After we understand the context for your request, the Helpdesk team will identify any existing resources or prior request responses that we think will be relevant and helpful. We will generally share these resources with you after our scoping call.

Develop a terms of reference

After the initial call, the Helpdesk team will develop a brief terms of reference (TOR) for support that notes an agreed-upon timeline, scope of work, and clear set of next steps, and identifies the staff and experts who will undertake the request response. You will be asked to review and confirm the contents of the TOR via email, and we also suggest that the FCDO or World Bank Helpdesk ‘lead’ share this document with others.

Prepare and finalise outputs

Then it is time for the Helpdesk to get to work on your request. We will complete the request according to the agreed TOR, and we will explicitly document the nature and strength of evidence we have drawn on.

In instances where evidence is limited and gaps exist, we will use the best information and experience possible to provide a well-informed answer. We anticipate these sorts of gaps will not be uncommon, due to the generally limited evidence base on EdTech in low-and middle-income countries. Helpdesk responses will also incorporate cost and value-for-money information whenever they are available, and note this limitation when not.

Provide quality assurance

For all responses, the Helpdesk will draw on expert input to source relevant research, resources, and examples. For written outputs, the Helpdesk will conduct quality assurance review. Expert reviewers will provide input on an early plan or outline, review a near-final draft, and review the final draft. A Helpdesk manager oversees all Helpdesk support.

Share outputs with you AND RECEIVE FEEDBACK

Once the response is ready to go and has been quality assured, we will share it with you via email for review and offer the option for a follow-up video/phone call to discuss any feedback or changes that need to be made to finalise it.

Share outputs as global public goods

By making Helpdesk responses publicly available, the Hub increases the impact of each response by reaching secondary audiences beyond the original requester.

The Helpdesk will make responses available as global public goods so that they can inform others with similar questions. During the initial phone call about your request, we’ll discuss a proposed plan for how to make the response public and agree on what can and cannot be shared. Expert consultations and programme document review responses will not be shared publicly. However, curated lists of resources and topic briefs are intended to become public, unless there are compelling reasons not to do so.

See the Hub’s evidence library to browse all Helpdesk responses that we have published so far.

Get your feedback

After submitting the request response to you, we’ll want your feedback.

We will send a brief survey or offer a short phone call to hear what worked well for you and identify anything we can do better next time. We are especially interested to know whether our support helped you make a better decision about EdTech, and if so, how.

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