Press | November 12th 2014

Governor Cuomo Announces Launch of New Official State Website, NY.gov

Governor Cuomo's office just released an announcement detailing the new NY.gov, designed by Code and Theory:

NEW YORK – Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today introduced the new NY.Gov official State website, featuring improved customer service, design, navigation, search and accessibility from virtually any device. This website’s overhaul is the first major redesign in 15 years, and sets a new bar for digital government services through its user-centric approach. Highlighting the Governor’s directive to State Agencies to focus on enhancing and modernizing service delivery to residents, businesses and visitors, the new website features streamlined service information, improved search, intuitive navigation, and a modern, vibrant look and feel redesigned to enhance user experience.

“Over the past four years we have worked to build a government that is responsive to the needs of our residents, businesses, and those that rely on the State for services and today’s launch of a new NY.gov is part of that effort,” Governor Cuomo said. “The newly redesigned NY.gov is a major component of our broader redesign of state government to make the services offered by the State more accessible and more efficient. With much of today’s interactions between the State and citizens happening over the internet, we are pleased to unveil a newly redesigned, much more user-friendly state website that continues our work to put people first in government.”

The website prioritizes information that is in high demand by New Yorkers, and makes it easier to find key services and programs. NY.gov launches with specially designed pages on the top 40 service requests from the public, including topics such as Start a Business and Get MWBE Certification, with more to be added over time. It also features a customized section that highlights local resources such as emergency alerts, transportation updates, local jobs, farmers markets and attractions. New York State government websites receive an estimated 735 million visits each year. The website was designed and built by creative agency Code and Theory, with support from the State's Office of Information Technology Services (ITS).

Underscoring the increasing importance of digital communications in public safety, the new NY.gov features specially designed templates and alerts to be deployed in emergency scenarios, helping New Yorkers get critical, streamlined updates quickly and easily from any devices.

In addition, the website’s powerful navigation tool enables users to instantly bookmark relevant services and return to them later using the My Services feature, enhancing customer service while making it easier to navigate government. And for the first time, visitors can interact with NY.Gov on any device and digital screen because of its fully responsive framework, reflecting the growing number of users that access State services from a mobile device. A range of social features allows visitors to easily share and discover information, customized for leading social media platforms that are increasingly important to how the public communicates today.

The redesign also includes a new content management system that allows the communications team to more quickly publish information, and the deployment of a navigation bar across all State websites to streamline and enhance deepen the user experience of digital government. The relaunch takes a Google-inspired approach to organizing the vast network of over one million pages of content and application across the State, by featuring a simple, powerful portal that connects users quickly, clearly and directly to the answers to their questions. The redesign elements, functionality and content management system will be extended to all interested State agencies beginning in 2015.

The website was developed through a collaborative, data-driven process involving stakeholders across State government, extensive user testing and analytics research, identifying top user requests and the most important information to highlight to users. The new website features over 40 "One-Stop Service" pages that give users all the information they need on a particular service, program or agency in one place, streamlining information about complex processes and presenting it in an easy-to-digest format.

The new NY.gov reflects public input and research, and features high-demand topics such as finding jobs, starting a business, applying for licenses, signing up for health insurance, paying taxes, finding emergency information and more.

NY.gov's overall design has been enhanced to be more engaging and usable. It features a simplified, streamlined look with a brighter colors, higher contrast, larger images, bigger text size and both live and on-demand video embedded directly on the homepage. Through the adoption of best practices in accessibility, the new NY.gov surpasses ADA requirements, and has been tested on screen readers. The new website enables the user to easily search, browse information or locate services. The website also provides access to automated translations in over 70 languages for the first time in history.

As ‘employment’ is a top driver of traffic to all NY.gov websites, the new NY.Gov features have been designed to make it easier to find a job, start a new company, attend a career fair or get certified as a minority- or women-owned business (MWBE). It also streamlines the process of signing up for relevant services such as unemployment benefits for those searching for work, and disability insurance for those in need.

Finally, the website helps all New Yorkers to take advantage of what their State has to offer and more fully engage in government by connecting them to the State’s official mobile app store, linking to agency social media channels, improving social sharing functionality, offering free, downloadable events calendars and providing a guide to county agencies.

“Thanks to Governor Cuomo’s leadership and valuable input from the public, the new NY,gov website sets a higher standard for digital government. The new NY.gov puts information and resources at the fingertips of New Yorkers as never before, reflecting the Governor’s commitment to service, transparency and efficiency,” said Rachel Haot, the State’s Chief Digital Officer. “This is an important milestone in our innovation Roadmap for New York State, and we appreciate the collaboration of the technology community and the partnership of hundreds across State government in making it a reality.”

"Completely restructuring and simplifying such a massive repository of information, while also making New Yorkers' lives easier, was an incredibly satisfying challenge," said Mike Treff, Managing Partner of the Product Design Group at Code and Theory, the creative agency the State worked with to prepare the new website. “We're proud to have partnered with the State to reimagine the way people interact with and access its services."

Brian Digman, New York State Chief Information Officer, said, “I’d like to thank all those at ITS that worked so hard on getting this project off the ground. This new website will open up the digital doors to NY State government like never before, helping fulfill Governor Cuomo’s pledge to make the State work more efficiently for the people. I am pleased with the close partnership between ITS and Code and Theory that helped get the new website up and running.”

For more information about Code and Theory’s work on the new website, visit here.

Visit the new website at NY.gov.

You can also watch a video on the new website.

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