Monthly Theme

How UX Effects Change in Government—One Test, One Customer Survey at a Time

Nov 9, 2015 |

Over the past few years, many agencies have learned how to do user experience (UX) with few resources. And while that’s still a problem at many agencies, many UX initiatives have been gaining momentum and attracting new stakeholders. Federal-wide efforts like the Social and Behavioral Sciences Team (SBST) and the U.S. Digital Service’s (USDS) promotion Read »

The Content Corner: Structured Content and the Power of Syndication

Nov 9, 2015 |

A recent DigitalGov webinar on syndicated content and the recent achievements of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention helped open my eyes even wider to the possibilities of open and structured content. By offering critical health information via syndication, CDC and other Department of Health and Human Services agencies are helping resource-strapped local agencies share Read »

Skin & Bones Come Alive with Smithsonian App

Oct 29, 2015 |

The night air is cool and crisp, the autumn leaves are falling, your costume is ready, jack-o-lanterns carved, lights dimmed, candy in the basket—what else do you need to make “All Hallows’ Eve trick or treat” complete? Some eerie music, a spine Read »

The Data Briefing: Create an App for Employees with Disabilities

Oct 28, 2015 |

Have you worked with an employee with a disability? Are you an employee with a disability? Then, you know the unique challenges of the average workplace that able-bodied colleagues may never experience. Workplace challenges could be overcome with accommodations such as larger computer monitor displays, wheelchair-accessible office furniture or a voice reader. In some cases, Read »

Texting is Another Way to Make Mobile Moments

Oct 26, 2015 |

There are several things federal agencies need to think about in the mobile space. Is my website responsive, so that consumers can view it on any device (desktop/laptop, tablet, smartphone)? Do I have mobile apps that fill citizen needs? But does texting have a place in the U.S. government, as we strive to serve citizens Read »

Is Your Site Mobile-Friendly?

Oct 23, 2015 |

What is mobile-friendly? Mobile-friendly simply means your visitors can use phones and tablets to visit your website and have a user-friendly experience. Many of us get toward the end of mobile site development and really do not know if what we created is “mobile-friendly.” We think we have followed all of the mobile best practices Read »

The Data Briefing: Highlights from 300 Federal Mobile Moments

Oct 21, 2015 |

DigitalGov’s theme this month is mobile moments, which explores the impact of mobile applications in the federal government. For this post, I am examining the more than 300 mobile apps created by the federal government. An updated list of federal mobile apps is on USA.gov. According to the list, 73 federal organizations have released mobile apps on a wide Read »

Trends on Tuesday: Focus on Mobile Performance to Provide Better Mobile Moments

Oct 20, 2015 |

The New York Times recently published a report evaluating the cost of mobile ads on news websites and found that on many of the major sites, the ads were taking as much bandwidth and time as the content (if not more, in some cases). This comes after the recent hubub over Apple starting to allow Read »

Trends on Tuesday: Is Crowdsourcing the Future of Mobile Design and Development?

Oct 13, 2015 |

NASA recently announced the winners of a smartwatch app interface competition. A Canadian duo won the design competition, and NASA’s plan is to build the app with 2016 funding to have it available for astronauts to use when they are aboard the International Space Station. This is the first government smartwatch app development we’ve talked about Read »

Is Your Agency Winning Its Mobile Moments?

Oct 7, 2015 |

Someone has a problem they are trying to solve. They pull out their mobile device and find a solution. They move onto something else. That’s a mobile moment. Organizations are living and dying by their mobile moments, and a few government agencies are winning theirs. We’ve written before how the Transportation Security Administration is winning Read »

NASA + Lunar Eclipse = A Super(moon) Match Made in Metrics Heaven

Sep 28, 2015 |

NASA’s reach over the last 24 hours eclipsed that of the regulars typically seen in government digital metrics. But, all agencies can drive the conversation Read »

Setting Up a Performance Measurement Team

Sep 24, 2015 |

As part of an organizational shift to functional teams at GSA’s Federal Citizen Information Center (FCIC), we created a Performance Measurement Team that consolidates data analysis for our websites, contact center channels, and marketing channels. Instead of looking at metrics within the bubble of each program, we’re beginning to leverage insights across programs. These are Read »

Speed Matters: Optimizing Your Website For Maximum Performance

Sep 16, 2015 |

Every second counts, even those precious two or three seconds it takes your website to load. When it comes to mobile, users won’t wait. During a recent DigitalGov University webinar, Jeremy Vanderlan, Technical Deputy for AIDS.gov, explained how even fractions of a second can have a negative impact on a user’s impression of your website. Read »

Caution: Your Web Analytics Might Not Be Human

Sep 9, 2015 |

A Digital Analytics Program (DAP) user recently contacted me with an observation/problem: The data he had from his website’s independent Web-analytics account was much, much higher than the data he was receiving in the DAP user interface. Theoretically, both tools (in this case, two separate Google Analytics accounts), were trying to measure the same thing, Read »

Monthly Theme: Learning to Ride the Metrics Wave

Sep 8, 2015 |

We are awash in data. Data in our personal lives gives us information on everything from our nightly sleeping patterns to how many of our friends shared our latest quip on social media. So too in our professional world, where we can see the most popular devices people use to navigate our websites and are told Read »