Need a website address?

If you don’t have a domain name, get in touch with the Domain Name System (DNS) Service. They register and manage and domain names for central and local government agencies.

Domain Name System (DNS) Service(external link)


Website lifetime - from business case to decommissioning


Every website requires on-going investment and can be expected to make a measurable contribution to an agency's strategic goals. All agencies should be able to align all their digital services to the ICT Strategy and have assurance that each product is delivering measurable results that contribute to the agency's, and the Government’s strategic outcomes.

Ongoing investment of online products(external link)
ICT Strategy(external link)


Digital lifecycle

  • Build services around the needs of users
  • Think about the lifecycle of digital delivery



A phase in which you start researching the needs of your service’s users, describe a possible future state for them, and think about what you could measure to determine success — before you start.



This short phase is where you prototype a range of different solutions that may meet your users’ needs. You’ll be doing research with a small group of users, and getting early feedback about the design of the service. In this phase you might start on paper but aim to develop a basic working service, and invite a small number of real users to try it out and gather their feedback.


You’re developing to the demands of a live environment, understanding how to build and scale while meeting user needs. You’ll be iteratively releasing working versions of the service to the public — and thinking ahead to the requirements of a live environment. You'll do more user research and your beta should change and evolve as you learn ever more about user needs.



The work doesn’t stop once your service is live. You’ll be continually improving your service, reacting to new needs and demands, and meeting targets set during development. Different forms of user research and feedback will be available to you now. You'll need processes and systems in place to monitor key metrics like user satisfaction or completion rates to understand how your service is working for your users.



At some point the service may come to the end of its useful life. This could mean retiring and archiving it, migrating its function somewhere else or replacing it, but it needs to be thoughtfully managed and carefully executed. As well as requirements for digital preservation, you'll need a plan to deal with disposing of infrastructure you no longer need.

Guidance on digital lifecycles(external link)


Design and build your website

You will need designers and developers to help build your new website. You may have this resource in-house. Otherwise, you can easily access the skills you need by using the Common Web Services Panel. The Web Toolkit also has guidance on design and development.

About the Common Web Services Panel(external link)



The following vendors from the Web Services Panel(external link) are capable of developing in CWP. If you would like to engage with a vendor on the panel, please email

Silverstripe has additional partners outside of the Web Services Panel who can develop in CWP as well. Here is the full list of Silverstripe partners(external link).


Sharing code to reduce cost to government

Built on Silverstripe CMS, CWP helps agencies to participate in the wider community by using existing code and sharing new code created. Open sourcing new features contributes back to the community and benefits New Zealand, not-for-profits, and private companies.

How CWP improves - co-fund development pool 
How to share code 


Web Standards

There are web standards that you must meet to improve the experience of your online users, including the Web Accessibility Standard and the Web Usability Standard.

About NZ Government Web Standards(external link)


Privacy, security and risk

New Zealand Government agency websites have a number of obligations that must be met around privacy, security, and risk management. Guidance is available to help you make informed decisions around online protect security and privacy risk management.

About NZ Government security and privacy risk management(external link)

Need to undertake additional security or privacy work on your website?

If you want to undertake further security and privacy work on your website, you can use the Security and Related Services (SRS) Panel, a group of industry experts contracted to provide government agencies with advice on a range of security and privacy practices.

About the SRS(external link)


Maintenance and support

If you don't have budget allocated for ongoing improvement and development, you should be hearing alarm bells. The Web Toolkit has guidance on how to run a live website.

Guidance on managing online channels(external link)

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