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Gov’t Web sites to have common ‘look and feel’

By Marlon C. Magtira | Mar. 25, 2013 at 12:02am
To provide the government its own corporate online identity, the country’s top ICT agency has announced that training has been undertaken for personnel of government agencies who will develop and manage their websites based on a template designed to give all government sites a standard “look and feel”.

The training series will instruct webmasters of various government agencies on how to integrate the Government Website Template, including its policies and standards, using Joomla, Drupal, and WordPress as content management systems (CMS).

Held simultaneously in two venues: the National Computer Center (NCC) and Advanced Science and Technology Institute (ASTI) in UP Diliman, Quezon City, the two five-day training sessions on the use of Joomla CMS, basic and advanced, were scheduled from March 18 to March 22.

“Through the standardized websites, Local Government Units, National Government Agencies and State Universities and Colleges will experience ease in navigation and use of digital assets,” said Antonette Torres, iGovPhil project manager.

“More than that, content, news updates, public documents and other services will be easily accessible to the citizens. Issues about government transparency, efficiency and accessibility will be addressed,” Torres said.

The Government Website Template is an initiative of the Integrated Government Philippines (iGovPhil) project led by agencies under the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) – ASTI and Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO) – in collaboration with the Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office (PCDSPO).

Webmasters from 162 participating government agencies in Metro Manila are expected to attend the training sessions scheduled until April.

Trainings for webmasters in the various provinces will be done by region starting May this year, with state universities and colleges as training venues.

The training sessions on the use of the standard Government Website Template is being done in anticipation of an Executive Order mandating all government websites to have a standard look and feel.

According to a study conducted by the NCC, content and structure are significant issues facing government websites, with too many menus confusing users while heavy multimedia content cause slow loading time with some Web sites.

The website template project is also being undertaken in conjunction with the plan of DOST to improve accessibility and security of government websites by providing a central Web hosting facility.
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