Websites policy (IS26)

Policy

This Queensland Government Enterprise Architecture (QGEA) policy states the minimum requirements for Queensland Government agencies in the creation, implementation and management of websites.

Policy statement

The Queensland Government will:

  • implement a consistent approach to delivering customer-centric services and information on its websites
  • ensure that website content is accessible and easy to use.

Policy benefits

This policy ensures equitable access for all customers, making online customer interaction with the Queensland Government as simple as possible, and supports the channel shift to online.

This policy supports Queensland Government’s strategies and initiatives by enabling innovative service delivery that is supported by a system that ensures quality and consistency with a customer focus.

Conformance to this policy also helps agencies:

  • contribute to the digital-first approach for delivery of information and services
  • increase the professionalism and reputation of Queensland Government in the online channel
  • meet international standards and best practice
  • increase customer satisfaction through consistent presentation of website elements
  • achieve efficiencies in web development costs through the ability to use robust, pre-tested templates
  • leverage whole-of-government development of new functionality in the online channel.

Applicability

This policy applies to all public-facing websites, and their associated content, established by Queensland Government agencies or that represent Queensland Government through the use of corporate branding, with the exception of websites in the eq.edu.au domain. Websites within the eq.edu.au domain must conform to departmental policy.

While this policy does not apply to local government agencies or content within intranets or extranets, compliance is recommended as it demonstrates best practice. In addition, the Web Accessibility National Transition Strategy scope stated that conformance to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (level AA) was required for all internet, intranet and extranet sites by December 2014.

An exemption granted by the Department of the Premier and Cabinet from the Queensland Government Corporate Identity does not qualify as an exception from this policy. Queensland Government agencies must follow the QGEA exception process (Queensland Government employees only) to request an exception to this policy.

If an agency website is granted an exception to this policy, the website must still conform to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (level AA). Equal access to online information is mandated by the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) and the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld).

This policy has broader applicability as listed in the Authority and applicability of the QGEA guideline.

Policy requirements

Policy requirement 1:  Queensland Government websites must maximise accessibility, usability and consistent presentation

Queensland Government websites must maximise accessibility and usability for all groups of the community—this includes ensuring that the literacy and language needs of customers are catered for.

Queensland Government websites must:

  • have AA level conformance with the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0
  • comply with the appropriate Queensland Government Website Standard:
    • Franchise Website Standard (also known as Single Website Experience or SWE) for franchises and whole-of-government portals – made up of a set of technical components and accompanying implementation guidance. This is currently available to agencies that participate in the franchise model (www.qld.gov.au).
    • Agency Website Standard (also known as the Consistent User Experience or CUE) for agency public-facing websites.

When outsourcing website development and management, agencies must ensure that conformance to this policy, including conformance to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (level AA), is included in tender specifications, service level agreements and contracts. This includes the use of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) products.

Policy requirement 2:  Agencies must notify the Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation (OSSSIO) when planning new or significantly redeveloped websites

Agencies must notify the Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation (One-Stop Shop Strategy and Implementation Office – OSSSIO) via oss.online@dsiti.qld.gov.au when planning a new website or planning to significantly redevelop an existing website (where this is sufficient work to be classified as a website project).

This is to ensure that:

  • a new or redeveloped website is the best approach to publishing this content or to identify a more appropriate existing website that could instead be used (e.g. open data portal, publications portal or the Queensland Government website—qld.gov.au)
  • the website will be based on the correct layer within the Queensland Government Website Standards
  • whole-of-government analytics and feedback will be configured correctly.

Advice

Implementation advice for this policy can be found in the:

Issue and review

Version:                7.0.0
Issue date:           20 February 2017
Next review date:  February 2019

This QGEA policy is published within the QGEA and is administered by the Queensland Government Chief Information Office. It was developed by the Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation, One-Stop Shop Strategy and Implementation Office and approved by the Queensland Government Chief Information Officer.

Implementation

This policy comes into effect from the issue date. Agencies must comply with the currently-published requirements unless otherwise agreed with the policy owner (DSITI, OSSSIO).


Last Reviewed: 20 February 2017