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U.S. administration launches national digitization campaign

"Administration Digitization"
“Administration Digitization”

The U.S. administration has recently launched a national digitization campaign to improve the digital capabilities of over 10,000 federal websites. This campaign aims to enhance access to information and create increased efficiencies in interactions between the government and its citizens. It also seeks to simplify bureaucratic procedures and raise overall government performance.

The enhancement plan includes redesigning websites to be more mobile-friendly, given the steady rise in mobile internet use. The trimmed bureaucratic procedures and advanced cybersecurity measures are expected to bolster data privacy and security. Alongside this, plans are underway to accommodate the diverse digital literacy levels among the population, ensuring no one is left behind in this digital transformation.

According to a recent study, almost half of federal websites lacked mobile-friendliness and presented potential accessibility issues. The figures underline a significant gap in digital accessibility that can negatively affect public trust in government sites. To address these issues, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under President Biden’s administration has established a set of design guidelines targeting government agencies.

The new guidelines aim to improve user interaction with federal sites and ensure correct, timely information is made accessible. This is anticipated to foster a more seamless navigation process and create a unified visual identity across all government agency websites.

Enhancing U.S. government’s digital accessibility

The OMB believes these changes will stimulate better engagement and satisfaction amongst citizens when dealing with their government online.

With the updated policies, Whitehouse.gov has been revised and now serves as a reference standard for all government sites. The Federal Chief Information Officer at the OMB, Clare Martorana, emphasized the necessity of trust and certainty when the public interacts with government sites, knowing they are dealing with official entities. Regular monitoring and adherence to these guidelines are crucial for maintaining uniformity and authenticity in the public’s digital encounters with government sites.

The digital reformation aligns with the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act, which was enacted in 2018. Since then, over 200 sites have been updated, more than 600 have been made mobile-friendly, and SEO enhancements have been employed on over 400 sites. The remodeling strategy prioritizes high-traffic sites associated with organizations such as the U.S. Postal Service, IRS, CDC, and National Park Service. The aim is to offer a fluid user experience accessing official governmental data or benefits through search results from various government agencies and private entities.

The strategic overhauling is a work in progress but has already evident impacts. It doesn’t just focus on .gov sites but also addresses .org and .edu domains related to government services. This all steer towards making interactions with these key organizations more streamlined and user-friendly. The ongoing improvements aim to significantly enhance the digital experience of many users accessing information from critical institutions.

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