Today, the websites for No. 10 and the Deputy Prime Minister joined the organisations that have already made the transition to the government’s new single web domain, GOV.UK, which last month was named the Design Museum’s Design of the Year 2013, against international competition.
The 24th and final ministerial department website moved across to the single domain on 29 April.
Merging all departmental sites into GOV.UK was a key target of the Government Digital Strategy and its commitment to make government services ‘Digital by Default’. The original vision for a single government domain was suggested by Martha Lane Fox, as was the creation of the Government Digital Service (GDS), which has led the strategy. The final departmental moves also constitute progress on the government’s Civil Service Reform Plan, representing cross-government delivery by an increasingly skilled and unified civil service.
Minister for the Cabinet Office, Francis Maude said:
I’m proud to welcome the online home of No.10 Downing Street to GOV.UK, our flagship website for government.
Our digital by default vision for government is all about having online public services which are so good that people will choose to use them – that’s how we will get ahead in the global race. At GOV.UK anyone can find out information about any Whitehall department, all in one place.
Scrapping the old websites will save the taxpayer at least £50 million a year. But GOV.UK isn’t just about saving money, it’s designed to be clearer and has even won the Design Museum’s international Design of the Year Award, beating the Olympic Cauldron and the Shard.
The Cabinet Office estimates that closing the Directgov and Businesslink websites and moving all government sites to GOV.UK will save the taxpayer at least £50 million annually. It also estimates that £1.2 billion could be saved during this Parliament by bringing government transactional services online, with potential annual savings of between £1.7 and £1.8 billion in the longer term.
Mike Bracken, Executive Director of GDS, added:
Two years ago, there were an incredible 2,000 government websites. We’ve streamlined those into a single, central domain, GOV.UK, that is built entirely around the needs users have of government. We are designing online services that put those needs first and make it easier to do things like pay car tax, complete tax returns, apply for the state pension, and much more. GOV.UK represents world-class public service delivery and a fundamental improvement in the way users interact with government.
GDS will continue to move across to GOV.UK nearly 300 other agencies and central government bodies, of which 29 have already made the transition.
Notes to editors
In addition to the Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street and the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office, all 24 ministerial departments are now on GOV.UK.
Moving the No. 10 and Deputy Prime Minister websites to GOV.UK marks the latest stage of the orderly transition to consolidate all government websites on to a single domain. The closure of the Directgov and Business Link websites was the first stage and the second and third stages involved the transition of 24 government departments and a handful of agencies/non-departmental public bodies (NDPBs). The remaining agencies/NDPBs should make the transition by March 2014. This transition doesn’t simply involve copying the content on to a new site. The services and information these sites provide have been carefully examined and redesigned and rewritten to align more closely with the needs of users.
GOV.UK will be continuously and frequently updated and improved.
Read Martha Lane Fox’s report on the government’s digital estate.
The Government Digital Service (GDS) was set up within the Cabinet Office to deliver world-class digital products that meet people’s needs and offer better value for taxpayers’ money.