There’s social media which constitutes a great leap forward, and then there’s social media which, while only arguably social, is still better than what went before.
It’s been quite a frantic week, partly driven by the launch of the new Work Skills command paper online which falls squarely into the second camp. When the team’s busy, and a document needs to be turned round quickly, it’s natural to take the easy route when it comes to publishing online – create a PDF and stick it on the website along with the press notice.
The brief for Work Skills was to create something more engaging, showing the progress being made on integrating the employment and skills systems across the country. A great team from DIUS, DWP, and LSC supported by design agency Bell and several video production firms managed to pull together an online document which – while by no means cutting edge – helps to tell some engaging stories through video case studies of people who have benefited from policy changes.
I dreamed about using CoverItLive, Twitter, Qik and more to cover the launch, but frankly didn’t have the manpower or rationale to justify them. We could have tried something with Google Maps and YouTube, but the simple Flash player which was built just seemed like the easier and more reliable option. I’m proud of the simple and good value site we’ve ended up with: something that focuses on the stories rather than technology, makes a real effort at accessibility, and toes the line of Transformational Government. Command Paper 1.5 maybe. A step forward for online communication of a policy document. I think it’s through this kind of everyday innovation – slightly different, slightly better that we’ll make real progress over time.
And of course, you can download the PDF if you want to 🙂