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Subscriber update: Discovery tool upgrade progress (August 2022)

10 August 2022
  • Update

Discovery tool upgrade progress

Well, it happened! The building digital capability discovery tool was upgraded on 1 August (for the eagled eye, we actually had the platform live on the Sunday afternoon), and most of you have been able to access the tool without issue.

The success of this delivery is as a result of a huge collaboration between the service team, other colleagues in Jisc and you, the community. Thank you to all who have been involved in making this so successful.

New features

We are so proud to be able to bring you a number of new enhancements, some of which you have been requesting for some time, and others where we have realised that there is a better way of presenting the discovery tool.

Here are just a few features we want to shout about...

Tailored subject and department headings

Repeatedly, you have been asking to have bespoke departments and academic subject headings to add more meaning to your reports and to make new user registrations easier. As part of this enhancement programme, we have made this possible.

If you have chosen to utilise this option, your staff and students will be able to select from your list of departments or subjects when registering, or updating their personal details and you will be able to filter the organisational data using these headings also. 

This is an optional enhancement and may not suit every organisation. If you are interested and want to explore this further, please contact us.

Resource playlists

To help users focus their digital development, the new discovery tool has playlists for each of the elements within the digital capability framework. These playlists contain resources which will support the development of digital skills, they will show your progress to date and help move you along the levels of capability.

Did you know, you can now add playlists to favourites in the discovery tool or why not bookmark them or resources directly to your browser's favourites?


In a sector where we encourage self-reflection, we are pleased to bring to you the self-reflection function on the new discovery tool. Once you have completed the resource, select the "add a moment" option on the top, right-hand corner and add some reflections, actions or ideas to support your digital capability development.

Comparing results

Once you have completed the same question set more than once, you will have the ability to compare your progression from within the report. You can easily select the two report dates from the dropdown boxes and identify where the greatest progress has been made. 

Why not take this to your next performance management review to celebrate your progress and plan for future professional development.

Improved data dashboard

We are continuing to review how we can better present and use the data from the discovery tool, but one improvement we know will be welcomed, is that the data will be updated daily and not fortnightly. This will allow you to monitor progress of a digital capability campaign in almost-real-time, with updates occurring overnight.

Why not target departments to complete their question sets and use the up-to-date dashboards to monitor progress and reward high engagement.

If you need further support or information about any of the enhancements, please contact us.

User support

New support material

We know that many of you have used our staff and student login guides to create your own information packs for your community, and you will have renewed questions about accessibility and privacy. To help answer all your questions and support you in getting your organisation online, here are some useful sites.

There remains a vast array of support documentation on our newly-refreshed website.

If you still can't find what you are looking for, please contact us.

User reports

User reports created before the upgrade have not been migrated to the new platform, and so we encourage you to advise users to download and save the reports locally from by December 2022, at which point, the site will be closed and all reports will be deleted.

Administrator access

If you previously held administrator access either to view the organisational dashboards, or to manage resources, we wrote to you on 4 August to advise you to re-request this. You will need to have logged in before we can change your permissions, once you have done so please complete this short form. We will then grant you the same permissions you previously held within two working days.

Lead contacts: if you need to add or amend permissions for your organisation, please complete the standard access request form.

Resolving issues

As you would expect from any software development programme, when we went live, we faced a number of issues from user profile errors through to more significant authentication issues. Our team, and the software developers have worked tirelessly to resolve these issues and minimise the impact to our customers. Overall, our process for resolving the issues has proven hugely successful.

Authentication issues

We are aware that due to the upgrade, some organisations have had an issue with Open Athens authentication. If you experience any issues, we advise you raise a ticket with IT team with the following request:

"The BDC discovery tool ( ) has an authentication route for users through UK Federated Access. We use OpenAthens to access the service, but are currently getting a "Forbidden - you are not entitled to access this resource" error. 

Would it be possible for you to amend the permission set for this resource in the admin portal for OpenAthens? Everyone in our organisation should be able to access the site.

The resource is -"

Ask for help

We are also aware that as you explore the discovery tool further, you may encounter other issues or have questions. Please contact our Customer success team, who are happy to answer any questions or point you in the direction of other useful resources.

Upgrade surgeries and webinar

On occasion, emailing for help just doesn't cut it, what you really want is to speak to someone face-to-face, share your screen and discuss the issues. We have decided that for August and September, we will provide you with that opportunity. Via our community teams channel, we will hold drop-in surgeries for you to log in to and ask questions.

The surgeries will be held on

  • Thursday 25 August at 14:00
  • Wednesday 14 September at 10:30
  • Tuesday 27 September at 15:00

To attend these events and access the Microsoft Teams channel, please register to be part of the community and then head over to the Service news updates section.

We will continue to reflect on the successes and the learning opportunities from this project with a view to further develop our service and improve how we deliver enhancements. With this in mind, we would like to invite you to join us in a support webinar on Thursday 6 October at 12:30 for us to highlight the key changes to the discovery tool, and give you a chance to feedback on the tool and how we delivered it.

Details of how to register for the event will be found on the Jisc events page.

Contacting us

If you need to contact us, please email with “Building digital capability” in the subject line.

If you are discussing an existing issue, please ensure that you leave the ticket reference number in the subject line as this helps us monitor how and when we respond and resolve your queries.

If you have a new enquiry, please always start with a new email to to ensure that it is triaged and resolved in a timely manner.

Our team work 0900 - 1700 Monday to Friday, will aim to resolve all queries within five working days of your request and are committed to keep you up to date whilst we support you.