GSA pushes practical skills for agency Web managers

Government Web managers are learning new skills to improve the functionality of the sites they run.

The General Services Administration is sponsoring a series of classes this week to teach managers skills they will need to make government Web sites easier for users to read and navigate, to improve the way government sites are managed and measured, and to respond in times of crisis.

The workshop is being held at the Catholic University of America, and is the kickoff event for the Web Manager University.

The workshops include two-hour seminars as well as one- to two-day training sessions covering such topics as:
  • Web content and information architecture
  • Web governance
  • Web analytic, usability and design
  • Search engines
  • Web marketing

'Citizens are using the Internet for information more than ever, and this demonstrates the government's efforts to ensure the Web sites provide useful information to citizens on their terms,' said Lurita Doan, GSA administrator.

Web Manager University's semester program is a comprehensive, multidisciplinary training program for government Web managers. Participants discuss how to improve government Web sites and also how to improve public access to information and services, especially during emergencies.

The previous semester, more than 500 Web managers attended the training program, GSA said.

This week's kickoff workshop included speakers John Lewis Needham of Google Inc. and usability expert Jared Spool. More than 50 federal agencies, and several state and local governments sent Web managers and content specialists to the event, GSA said.

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