New & Upgraded Government Website Launched

March 31, 2016

[Updated] The new Government website was unveiled today, offering search functionality, a topics based format, a feedback button on each page and much more.

OPIN, a development company which appears to be based in Ottawa, Canada, was selected following an RFP process, and the Government said the “project was successfully brought in on time and on budget.

A spokesperson said, “The new Government portal www.gov.bm was unveiled today. Following a rigorous Request for Proposal [RFP] process, software development company, OPIN was selected.

“Drupal, an open source development software, was used to build the new portal. This cross-department project was successfully brought in on time and on budget.

Government-websitegg

“Some of the features of the portal include:

  • robust search functionality;
  • a topics based format, information is no longer centred around departments. Each page provides related resources and links helping users to find information faster and easier;
  • the ability to seamlessly format to mobile technology; and
  • a feedback button on each page.”

Premier and Minister for National Security, Michael Dunkley, stated, “In the November 2015 Speech from the Throne, the government promised to replace the old website and create an online presence that is user-friendly and accessible.

“This new site provides greater functionality and is easier to navigate. This includes the ability to look at the site from any mobile device. Our goal is to get visitors to the information they are looking in three clicks.

“The public is encouraged to visit www.gov.bm often because the portal team will continually update information, add content and enhance service functionality.”

Premier Dunkley concluded, “Each page has a feedback button, I encourage visitors to the site to let us know what you like about the new portal and what you would like to see more of.”

Update 6.30pm: In response to queries from Bernews, the Government said, “The company contracted to develop the new government portal is OPIN, a Canadian company. They were chosen because the solution they provided met all the criteria laid out in the RFP.

“Drupal is the platform which was used to develop the new government site and is an open source technology which means it is cost effective and far less expensive than a custom solution. Using this open source technology ensured the project came in on time and on budget.

“The cost to build the site and for five years of maintenance is $297,400.00.”

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Comments (15)

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  1. Unnaceptable says:

    The Economy is suffering and the OBA couldn’t find a Bermudian Company to do this?

    • wondering says:

      and the end rsult is a waste of money!!

      it isn’t a functional website IMHO. whoever did it seems to have copie the gov.uk website and Bermudianized it with pastel colours nad local photographs but it is useless for thse who may speak english as a second language, are elderly, or computer illiterate, impatient or don’t know how to spell (for instance) – i purposely misspelled a word in a hope that perhaps the web developer would have incorporated a wider search parameter feature like google does.

      what foolishness when it appears that a foreign company got the contract

      compare the two websites gov dot uk versus gov dot bm.

      simple is better in this instance……

      • wondering says:

        and for the naysayers – i have been made aware of a slew of instances where civil servants did not have a first hand account of the new website – the same persons who have to talk to the public who use the resource to find out information. marketing and public rollout are obviously NOt one of the requirements of the RFP or the Canadian company’s strongpoints

      • ididmyhomework says:

        The site uses google for its search functions
        It was released today and needs time to “learn”
        perhaps using the site for an actual use instead of trying to trick it might be of some value
        All Bermudian companies bid in excess of a million dollars
        The UK govt website is highly functional and useful, copying what works is not a bad thing.

        • wondering says:

          a site needing to learn isn’t a good explanation – knowing how these sites are built and how the search function operates – there are methods of populating the search feature to learn in a more efficient manner and to top it off, when you have a completely new layout versus the old model site, a far better job could have been done to have a btter transition between the two

          copying is not a bad thing when you don’t try to reinvent the wheel.

          the uk site is much much more user friendly and uses common (general) terms of reference such as:

          Benefits/Births, deaths, marriages and care/Business and self-employed/
          Childcare and parenting/Citizenship and living in the UK/
          Crime, justice and the law/Disabled people/Driving and transport/Education and learning/Employing people/Environment and countryside/
          Housing and local services/Money and tax/Passports, travel and living abroad/Visas and immigration/Working, jobs and pensions

          VERSUS

          Health/Money and Taxes/Public Safety and Law/Laws and Regulations/Driving and Transportation/Doing Business in Bermuda/Government contracts

          OUR “COPY” DOES NOT CAPTURE THE ADEQUATE HEADINGS FOR IT TO BE EASILY NAVIGATED

        • wondering says:

          it looks like it was built with tight purse strings and vetted prior to its release by a group of persons who do not/never have [or will] use it!

        • wondering says:

          it wasn’t meant to trick it – when you work with persons who speak english as a second language who complete forms or submit letters written how they believe english should be spoken will have a problem using a site that is “learning”

    • TravelingTreeFrog says:

      Workforce Developments website was upgraded/refurbished/rebuilt (not sure exaclty what they did) by a local company… I’d like to know how the price tag compares.

  2. Beep Blip says:

    A government resource built on an open source foundation (Drupal). Wow can’t wait for this to be hacked. IN other news gov.bm will be for sale on darknet for anyone looking for hacked sites for 50 cents a pop.

    • CodeMonkey says:

      Many US, Canadian, Australian and other government sites are running Drupal including whitehouse.gov. Not to mention over a million sites on the Internet.It is a very secure platform with a minuscule number of security vulnerabilities found annually. Please check your facts.

  3. Jolly says:

    No RSS feeds for updates?

  4. joe says:

    The site looks more like a magazine than a government site. When you have to find services, you don’t want to have to read over the photographs. Both the Canadian and UK governments know this and it is reflected in their portals. When you have a myriad of information and services to pipe through the site, make it clean and simple. Drop the fluff.

    • wondering says:

      My point exactly!

      Bermudian certainly go for the shiniest versus the best.

      All dat glittas ain’t gold

  5. Lord Help Me says:

    Pathetic !!! There is no other word for it. Our High schools could of given us much better results.

    You can only cry as these politicians piss off good earned Bermuda Dollars. Any other island this minister would not be able to walk the streets. 3/4 Million dollars to build a bermuda website with no direction, flavor and creativity. The website built in open source is non functional and is short in so many areas that it is said to think that someone poured that much money into crap.

    Here is your team link: http://www.opin.ca/en/team

  6. Gerry S. says:

    The budget sounds fair (for government). I’m very disappointed however that the new site is NOT compliant with accessibility standards. Was this not a requirement form my government, or is this vendor OPIN unable to deliver sites that work for people with disabilities?!?

    Also seams ill thought out… text fall off the page, and their seams to be special characters in many of the menus and search area !?!

    When I clear the PINK notices, they still reload on every damn page. Evidently a sign of a poor execution.

    I hope my Government asked for credits from the vendor at least!
    Disappointed.