PCW launches new, accessible, and mobile-friendly website

The Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) relaunches its website with a fresh new look, more accessible, mobile-friendly, and is packed with added features and content. Launched on the 11th anniversary of the Magna Carta of Women (MCW) on August 14, 2020, the new PCW website adapts to the need to deliver online services and information towards gender equality and women’s empowerment in a digital era. 

Compliant with the existing government mandates such as the Government Website Template Design, the Data Privacy Act, Web Accessibility Guidelines, Transparency Seal requirement and Republic Act 10535 or The Philippine Standard Time (PST) Act of 2013, the webpage is reflective of the government’s goal to enhance the role of information and communications technology in governance given the growing demands to provide an environment that ensures growth, inclusivity, accountability, openness and efficiency in delivering services to the people. 

Stakeholders can now navigate the new internet site with more ease. Coping with the demands of the always online digital citizens, the website is mobile-friendly and adjusts to various types of internet-ready devices. It also caters to those who have visual, auditory, and physical disabilities, with features including changing colors, skip to content and scroll down, and screen reader. 

The new site also features more sections/contents, including the announcements section, social media integration for citizens engagement and participation, Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), Featured videos, Women’s Agenda, Gender Mainstreaming, Success Stories on GAD, News bites, dedicated events pages for the National Women’s Month Celebration, and the 18-day campaign to end VAW, among others.

Developing the new PCW website

The PCW’s website was last re-organized and restructured in 2009-2010. With the enactment and effectivity of the Magna Carta of Women (RA 9710), the National Commission on the Role of Filipino Women (NCRFW) was renamed to PCW, and consequently, the website URL was changed from www.ncrfw.gov.ph to www.pcw.gov.ph. 

The government pushed for greater security on its information technologies following the defacements of a number of official websites in 2012. Thus, in 2013, government agencies were mandated to move to the Government Web Hosting Service of the Department of Science and Technology – Information and Communications Technology Office (now Department of Information and Communications Technology or DICT) and to adopt the Government Website Template (GWT) for a corporate online identity of all government websites through the Administrative Order 39. The GWT requires the government agencies to take on a standard design, navigation and content, as well as to comply with Web Accessibility Guidelines.

With this, the PCW also sought to intensify its online presence by using multiple platforms to engage more with its stakeholders and government agencies, through social media and other online assets. The development of the website started when a Website User Experience (UX) Survey was conducted in 2018 with respondents from government agencies, academe, non-government organizations, and media.

Key concerns were identified, including updating of contents, inclusion of photos, infographics and illustrations, use of simple language, and inclusion of descriptive texts for photos and subtitles for videos, in compliance to the Web Accessibility Guidelines. A Web Content Development Plan was established in 2018 and executed in 2019, including the content migration, adoption of GWT, restructuring of web architecture, among others. In 2020, the test site was announced to the public and another Website User Experience (UX) Survey was conducted from June 8 – 24, 2020.

This time, the respondents from national government agencies, regional offices, attached agencies, GOCCs, and SUCs provided their feedback. Most of them find the test site very appealing, easy to navigate, substantial, and engaging.

A survey participant from Bangued, Abra commented, “The new website uses more animations that would make viewing more fun and more informative. Katherine B dela Cruz of the Intercountry Adoption Board enthused, “The interactive features, very easy to navigate, attractive combination of colorsWe would love to do the same to our agency website.

With this new website, the PCW adheres and contributes to the digital transformation strategy of the Philippine government aimed at providing transparent and accountable governance, efficient operations, direct citizen engagement, and innovation.