Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Federal Web Site Requirements

The Office of Management and Budget has created policies for federal agency web sites. Most of the policies should come as no surprise. By December 31, 2005, federal agency web sites must:
  • Provide and maintain product inventories, priorities, and schedules.
  • Ensure quality of information product.
  • Ensure external links are necessary and ensure their quality.
  • Provide links to agency strategic and annual performance plans; agency organizational structure, mission and statutory authority; information about FOIA; privacy policies;; statistical data about EEO complaints; and agency point of contact for small businesses on their major entry pages.
  • Communicate with public, state, and local governments to determine which or what type(s) of information products are needed.
  • Provide a search function that includes all files intended for public use.
  • Use only .gov, .mil or domains.
  • Provide security controls to maintain accuracy as well as confidentiality.
  • Protect privacy of the public.
  • Ensure accessibility.
  • Manage records.

I would have expected that almost all of these would have been in place in any federal (or state) agency web site. I am very glad, however, that the search function is now required. Sometimes it is very difficult to find specific information on a government web site. (I was just trying to find NPRM and Federal Register information about an FCC ruling this morning -- it took too long!)

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