Building an API platform for Hackney Council

We unlocked critical housing data using an open-source API platform and microservice architecture.

The project

In order to build a new income collection service for Hackney Council, we needed to unlock critical housing data from legacy applications. This involved fixing the plumbing and building an open-source API platform so the new income collection service and other digital services could consume this data.

Photo showing Made Tech team members working on beanbags
Photo showing the Made Tech team at a meeting around a table

Our approach

Hackney Council knew it wanted to develop cloud-based APIs to connect legacy data sources, while also adopting modern software delivery practices. However, they didn’t know how to go about making this change and so we started by evaluating all the options.

We proposed a lightweight data platform of REST APIs and a microservice architecture that would enable the client to access and integrate a number of key data sources within housing. We also defined an API playbook to ensure there were common standards for interoperability of services and features across the Council’s various domains. This was the first API playbook to be developed at the local government level.

“Made Tech has met and exceeded all the standards we set for a technology supplier. Myself and my team are really happy with the work they have done.”

Black and white photo of Matthew Cain

Matthew Cain, Head of Digital and Data, Hackney Council

The results

In building out an open-source API platform and playbook for Hackney Council, we were able to help them improve their data infrastructure and insights and enable new technology capabilities. As a result of our work, the IT team could deploy C#/.NET to the cloud, use test-driven development (TDD) and automate Continuous Integration/Continuous Development (CI/CD). They were also empowered to develop further APIs, using the API playbook we had developed.

Hackney Developer API Hub laptop

“We want to build open APIs so good that people prefer to use them. Along with our partners, we will provide our users with the most effective, efficient service possible.””

From the Hackney API Factory

The results

  • Data platform of open-source REST APIs developed
  • API playbook developed, the first in local government
  • Council freed from single vendor lock-in
  • IT team upskilled to deploy C#/.NET into cloud
  • TDD and automated CI/CD introduced
  • IT team using APIs for other Council domains

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Case studies

Photo showing Hackney Town Hall

Data infrastructure transformation for Hackney Council

We helped Hackney Council to move its critical housing data from a legacy vendor to a cloud-enabled infrastructure.

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Picture showing Hackney Council income collection website open on a laptop

Housing income collection at Hackney Council

A digital service that increased rent collection and freed up case workers to support vulnerable residents.

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