Departmental Internet

Defence written question – answered on 6th April 2010.

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Photo of Grant Shapps Grant Shapps Shadow Minister (Communities and Local Government) (Housing and Planning), Co-Chair, Conservative Party

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much has been spent on (a) strategy and planning, (b) design and build, (c) hosting and infrastructure, (d) content provision and (e) testing and evaluation for his Department's websites in each of the last three years; and how much has been allocated for each such category of expenditure in 2009-10.

Photo of Bill Rammell Bill Rammell Minister of State (Armed Forces), Ministry of Defence

The Ministry of Defence and armed forces collectively maintain four principal websites. These sites are key channels to enable MOD to keep the public informed of defence activities, provide information about MOD and support recruitment.

In support of the Transformational Government agenda, we have made significant progress in rationalising other Defence websites. The closure of some 53 websites has enabled us to make savings and improve the clarity and effectiveness of the departmental web presence. A further 19 sites are committed to close by 31 March 2011.

The four remaining principal Defence websites register a high volume of web traffic. Annual page views for the corporate MOD site, www.mod.uk, have increased by 65 per cent. from 2006-09, from 17.5 million to 29 million.

Annual unique visitor numbers for www.mod.uk have increased by 34 per cent. over the same period, from 3.2 million to 4.3 million.

Expenditure for the four remaining principal sites over the last three financial years is summarised in the following table. Expenditure on these has increased while other websites have closed. Expenditure breakdown by category is not available for these financial years as this requirement was not introduced until 1 April 2009, when the "Measuring Website Costs: TG128" guidance issued by the Central Office of Information (COI) came into effect. It should be noted that the expenditure figures shown are not directly comparable year on year as costs were captured differently in each year.

£
Financial year
Website 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09
MOD corporate website: www.mod.uk 177,875 325,600 464,853
Royal Navy: www.royalnavy.mod.uk 270,000 283,000 283,000
British Army: www.army.mod.uk 235,000 426,500 501,814
Royal Air Force: www.raf.mod.uk 173,859 155,000 425,241

Projected expenditure broken down by category for the 2009-10 financial year for the four principal websites is detailed in the following table. Figures are exclusive of internal staff costs.

£
Website Strategy and planning Design and build Hosting and infrastructure Content provision Testing and evaluation Total
Ministry of Defence: www.mod.uk 0 (1)417,900 126,000 (2)292 8,070 (1)552,262
Royal Navy: www.royalnavy.mod.uk 100,000 (3)74,000 109,000 0 (4)- 283,000
British Army: www.army.mod.uk 15,875 24,870 118,651 (2)1,704 25,300 186,400
Royal Air Force: www.raf.mod.uk 22,085 147,691 49,675 0 2,938 222,389
(1) This figure also includes expenditure on MOD's internal Defence intranet.

(2) Translation services.

(3) Includes testing and evaluation.

(4) Included in design and build.

A number of other websites are run by different parts of the Ministry of Defence, but these are not managed centrally. Information on these sites could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

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