The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has over 1,700 public-facing websites to support the communications and information dissemination projects of its Institutes and Centers (ICs). Developing and managing these websites is a massive and costly effort. The NIH commissioned a study to identify the web and digital analytics information and develop recommendations to improve the quality, consistency, and comparability of website measurement among public-facing sites throughout the NIH.
There were different levels of analytics services at NIH, but no central group coordinates web or digital analytics strategies. The NIH community also had very different views about which measurements ICs should use to assess web content and communication, and how that information should be shared and compared. Similarly, most ICs lacked information about how to implement web analytics, collect data in standard ways, interpret results, or prepare reports and dashboards. Recommendations for improvement included: developing a coordinated strategy for NIH's web and digital efforts; establishing consistent funding for web analytics and other digital analytics software solutions and programs; using a team approach for planning, implementing, and using web analytics; developing data-collection frameworks and standards; and linking performance to web metrics to increase accountability.
Report Title: Needs Assessment for Developing Best Practices for Trans-NIH Web Analytics
Agency Sponsor: NIH, National Institutes of Health
Federal Contact: Rosanna Ng, 301-496-5367
Record ID: 9828 (December 22, 2011)