The business problem addressed by the Common Web Platform (CWP) is the significant level of duplicated investment made by government agencies in web initiatives, as well as the variability in the quality of service delivered through online channels.
The amount that government invests in online channels is significant – conservatively estimated as at least $40 million each year. The use of over 50 distinct content management systems indicates duplicate investment in web projects and web technologies across government agencies..
From an agency perspective, website developments are usually treated as a one-off project, requiring unnecessary reinvestment in design, development, procurement and security. The functional requirements of most government websites are similar, yet agencies rarely leverage investments already made in technology components, designs and contracts.
CWP demonstrates innovation and improvement across a connected, collaborative public sector to create Better Public Services (external link) . CWP helps towards results 9 and 10, improving interaction with government. Using a common, shared web platform across government makes it easier for agencies to collaborate on delivering information and services to New Zealanders. By reducing procurement time and the need to choose technology solutions, agency staff can focus on their core function: to provide government information online and deliver business outcomes.
CWP aligns with the ICT strategy and action plan 2013-2017 (external link) focus area 'Investment and capability are shared'. In particular that ICT systems should:
"leverage common, standard technology platforms, procured ‘as-a-service’ to drive scale efficiencies;"
"use existing functionality components from across the system wherever possible, to reduce duplication and fragmentation"
Using a shared online code repository makes reusing other agencies code easy, and ensures that code developed for the Crown is not locked in by vendors. This reduces the duplication in investments made for website development.
CWP reduces the overall cost of operating the New Zealand Government’s online channel, allowing agencies to focus on providing better information and services. Improved security will give New Zealanders the trust they need to engage with the Government online. Making it easier to comply with the New Zealand web standards, will improve the accessibility of information and services. The platform has a multi-lingual capability which makes it easier publish content in other languages, reaching a wider audience.
For an agency, CWP:
For agency staff, CWP: