Census bureau redesigns website to make it more accessible for high-frequency users

A Census "lister." (Census Bureau)

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The U.S. Census Bureau on Monday launched a refresh of Census.gov that is expected to give researchers and citizens easier access to the agency’s vast amount of survey data.

Most significantly, the website has been improved through a redesign of its main navigation bar at the top of the page and new navigation options for high-frequency users like researchers, educators and survey respondents have been introduced.

“The Census Bureau conducted extensive customer research and usability testing to identify ways to improve the digital experience and enhance how users find statistics for research, projects and business needs,” Census said in a press release Monday.

“The Census Bureau has boosted overall site performance and mobile functionality along with updating the visual design,” the agency added. The refreshed Census.gov website debuted on September 17.

Improving researchers’ access to datasets held by federal agencies remains a key priority for data and IT leaders across government. In an interview with FedScoop earlier this month, Federal Chief Data Officer Denice Ross highlighted the use of disaggregated data as a core priority and its importance for identifying policy inequalities.

The website refresh comes as reshaping digital service delivery remains high on the Biden administration’s agenda, following the customer experience executive order signed by President Biden last year.

The order mandates that federal agencies commit to placing citizens’ user experience at the center of everything they do and that departments take actions including piloting new online tools and technologies to provide a “simple, seamless and secure customer experience.”

It came after the Biden-Harris administration last year announced that improving the design of digital services and the customer experience management of high-impact government service providers were among top priorities in the president’s management agenda.

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survey, U.S. Census Bureau, user experience, user interface, website, website redesign
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