GDS to audit all GOV.UK pages by 2020

GOV.UK  revamp will group information by theme, rather than organisation


By SA Mathieson

12 Jul 2017

The Government Digital Service (GDS) plans to audit more than 300,000 pieces of content on GOV.UK by 2020, as part of a reorganisation of the central government website.

GDS has already audited and reorganised pages on education, with the aim of presenting material by theme rather than by the organisation that provided it. GDS's digital engagement lead Angus Montgomery told a session at Civil Service Live that the site’s current structure is a legacy of the way it was established.

“We moved each department on separately. The content came on disconnected,” he said. “The site was built around the departmental content that came onto it. That doesn’t really work for users.”


As well as improving the material such as by checking pages have useful titles, GDS is improving navigation for users, GOV.UK's email subscription service – where users can receive updates to track what's going on government – and its cross-government blogging platform. It is also reducing the number of page template designs and setting up a new campaigns service. 

GDS launched the first beta version of GOV.UK, which replaced Directgov, in early 2012, with all 25 central government departments having moved their material to the site by March 2013. Montgomery said that while Directgov underwent major updates once every six months, “we’re constantly improving, constantly iterating GOV.UK so it works better for users”.

A total of 312 organisations have moved to GOV.UK, resulting in the closure of 685 web domains and subdomains and 1.8 million redirections from old web addresses to new ones on GOV.UK.

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