How to publish on GOV.UK

From
Government Digital Service
Updated
, see all updates

Statistics

How to create and edit statistics announcements and publications.

How statistics announcements work

Don’t create or modify statistics or statistics release announcements unless you have authorisation from the UK Statistics Authority.

You need to create a publication even if the statistics publication won’t be published on GOV.UK. The page summarises what the statistics are about and provides a link to the external statistics publication.

Statistics announcement style points

First, search GOV.UK for any similar announcements. You should match the title style of previous publications if you can. You must also follow the style guide when writing for GOV.UK.

Title

Statistics release titles must:

  • be under 65 characters
  • describe the statistics in the release in plain English
  • include the coverage and time the statistics relate to
  • not include the word ‘statistics’ - it’s already on the page
  • be in sentence case
  • be optimised for search (frontload the most important information)
  • use a colon instead of hyphens or dashes and a comma if you need a second separator
  • not contain jargon or technical language
  • not include abbreviations or acronyms (unless well known, for example, UK, VAT or EU)

Summary

The summary gives more information about the statistics, and will show in most search engine results. It should:

  • be under 140 characters (including spaces)
  • explain what the release is about in plain English (no jargon)
  • be a unique description specific to the release
  • not repeat the title
  • begin with the most important words (not ‘This release provides…’)
  • end with a full stop
  • explain any acronyms used in the title

Remember, when a release title or summary is displayed in the release calendar or search engine results, users need to see whether it’s what they want. All text needs to be checked by the author and another person before it is published.

Create a statistics announcement

  1. Select the ‘Statistics announcements’ tab in Whitehall publisher.

  2. Click the ‘Create announcement’ link.

  3. Choose a statistics type. Only select the ‘National Statistics’ option if your statistics are accredited by the UK Statistics Authority.

  4. Complete the ‘Title’ and ‘Summary’ fields.

  5. Add any relevant organisations and topics.

  6. Tick the ‘Confirmed date?’ box if you’re sure of the release date.

  7. Complete all mandatory fields (marked by a red asterisk).

  8. Have someone review your work to check it’s correct before you save it.

  9. Click ‘Publish announcement’ - it will publish on GOV.UK immediately.

  10. You’ll see a message which says ‘Connect a draft publication to this announcement’. You must create a new statistics publication, or connect it to an existing one.

Create a statistics publication for your announcement

In Whitehall publisher, once a statistics announcement is published you’ll see a message which says ‘Connect a draft publication to this announcement’.

Underneath are 2 options to link the announcement to a statistics publication:

  • ‘Draft new document’ (best option)
  • ‘connect an existing draft’ (less good option)

When the statistics publication publishes, the announcement will disappear from the release calendar.

Publication style points

Body text should:

  • follow the style guide
  • describe what the statistics are about and their purpose
  • be clear, concise and written in plain English
  • provide context if there are statistics with similar titles
  • not repeat the title and summary
  • not summarise what the publication says

Draft a new document

  1. Click ‘Draft new document’. This will automatically create a statistics publication page for your statistics document. The publication type, title, summary and topic fields will be filled in automatically for you.

  2. Fill in the body text. This should tell users that the release is about. It should also say whether the method or classification of the statistics has changed since the last publication.

  3. Click ‘Save and continue editing’ so you can attach the file containing the statistics.

Connect an existing draft

  1. If the draft of the statistics publication is already in Whitehall publisher, select ‘Connect an existing draft’.

  2. When a search box appears, type in the title of the publication and select it from the list of results. This will link the 2 pages together.

Review and publish a statistics publication

When your publication document is ready and saved, click ‘Submit for 2nd eyes’. This will allow another editor to review your document.

If they’re happy with the page, they can publish it immediately, or schedule it to be published on a specific date.

Edit a statistics announcement title, summary, organisation or topic

  1. Select the ‘Statistics announcements’ tab in Whitehall publisher. This will bring up a list of existing announcements.

  2. Select the announcement you want to edit.

  3. Click the ‘Edit announcement details’ button.

  4. Make your changes.

  5. Have someone else check your text for errors.

  6. Click ‘Save and publish changes’.

Change the release date of a statistics announcement

  1. Select the ‘Statistics announcements’ tab in Whitehall publisher. This will bring up a list of existing announcements.

  2. Select the announcement you want to edit.

  3. Select the ‘Change release date’ button.

  4. Change the date.

  5. If you’re changing a confirmed date, add a change note to explain the change of date - this will appear on the page for the public to read.

  6. Click ‘Publish change of date’.

Cancel a statistics announcement

If you cancel an announcement, it will remain in the calendar until a month after the planned publication date. You will have to explain why the statistics have been cancelled.

To remove a duplicate announcement or one published by mistake, raise a ticket using the GOV.UK Support form and ask for the announcement to be deleted from the website.

For all other cases:

  1. Select the ‘Statistics announcements’ tab in Whitehall publisher. This will bring up a list of existing announcements.

  2. Select the announcement you want to cancel.

  3. Click on the ‘Cancel statistics release’ button towards the bottom of the page. A box will appear asking you to give the ‘Official reason for cancellation’. This is a mandatory field which will appear on the website.

  4. Add your text to the ‘Official reason for cancellation’ box.

  5. Click the ‘Publish cancellation’ button.