Most federal websites still not ready for mobile access, survey finds

About a third of federal e-government websites already have mobile-optimized versions available to reach the public, and more may be in the works, according to a new survey.

“Although the private sector is leading the way in mobile innovation, federal agencies, departments, and programs are starting to accept mobile as a critical channel to serve the general public, “Larry Freed, president of ForeSee Results research firm, said in the April 24 report.

ForeSee has been tracking adoption of mobile applications and development of mobile websites by its federal clients for 14 months. The company regularly tracks customer satisfaction for about 190 federal e-government websites run by dozens of agencies, according to Sarah Allen-Short, a spokeswoman.


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Over the past 14 months, ForeSee also has been interviewing federal web managers about the adoption of mobile sites and applications by those 190 websites.

The polling indicates that about a third of the websites already have a mobile-optimized version available, the company said. That means two-thirds do not, but many of the managers surveyed said plans were in the works at their agencies for either mobile websites or mobile applications, ForeSee said in the report.

The exact number of federal Web managers who were interviewed about their plans was not specified in the report, and Allen-Short said the number was not available.

ForeSee’s Freed recommended that federal agencies become adopters of mobile technology because it is becoming more and more popular as a way to reach the public.

“The more private-sector companies create and deploy mobile-enabled experiences, the more citizens will grow to expect them from government,” Freed wrote in the report. “Government agencies that make an early and powerful impression using this channel could realize huge cost-savings by satisfying citizens across channels. Those who don’t are missing out on delivering the value and convenience that makes citizens satisfied and saves the government money.”

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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