Communications shows what digital can do for annual reports


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The Department of Communications has to walk the digital walk, given its role involves a lot of talking the digital talk. Its latest annual report sets a high bar for other departments to follow.

The online version of the Department of Communications annual report is a pretty slick piece of work that aims to earn the respect of its tech-savvy stakeholders and set a new benchmark in the way government agencies present complex information.

The report was built from scratch using HTML5. Its most striking feature is its use of clever animated infographics that unfurl and click into place as you get to them. The design work is both easy on the eye and intuitive, making it as easy to read from start to finish as it is to jump around between different sections.

A screenshot from the Department of Communications annual report

A screenshot from the Department of Communications annual report

According to a manager in the department’s digital communications branch, producing the HTML report took significant investment, time and effort, but it was also a “learning experience” that can be built on next year. Given its responsibilities in the online space, it was considered important for Communications to aim high and demonstrate its digital chops:

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  • A good start, but a terrible shame the financials are in PDF — and scanned PDF’s at that — completely inaccessible to people using assistive technology.