Abstracts: January 26th, 2006

This report from the Society of IT Management, describes how the bar is being raised on what it expects councils to achieve in this vital area for modern public services. From January 2007 a new ranking of effective, efficient and engaging will be awarded. It will be placed below the excellent ranking.Examples of twelve sites that offer a compelling user experience are provided in the report along with detailed analysis of what makes them such good websites. Six of the sites are from local government: these are: Birmingham, Brent, Maidstone, Poole, Surrey and Wrexham . The remainder are outstanding examples from other sectors, including Amazon, Easyjet, Visit Britain, Friends Reunited, the Equal Opportunities Commission, and the BBC.

This first amendment to the ranking marks an evolutionary change in the overall ranking system to reflect the fundamental change taking place in e-government. The lowest ranking of a promotional site is likely to be dropped soon as the last of the council sites progress beyond this category. Similarly the next ranking of ‘content’ is likely to be phased out some time later.

The report ‘Better connected: aiming high’ is available from Socitm. 175 pounds. http://www.socitm.gov.uk/