What we’ve been working on: Tuesday 25th August

August 25, 2015 by No Comments | Category Digital Public Services,

This is a post by Jono Ellis, our Social Media Manager

We’re pretty excited about a few things that we’ve been working on recently for, the publishing platform and it’s accompanying tools. This morning these fixes, features and improvements have been made available to users through our latest release. We wanted to share a summary of these through our regular ‘What we’re been working on’ blog posts.

Our ambition, as always, is to learn from how people respond to these changes – through feedback, analytics and testing.


  • Improvements to the experience offered by our browser pages, improving both the look and feel and the organisation of information offered to users. This has provided the opportunity to make them easier to use and to increase awareness of where the user is at any given moment
  • Embeddable video. We have traditionally focused on creating text based content, however as the needs of users become better understood we are building tools to allow us to handle other content types (e.g. images, video and downloadable files). The need for video became apparent through sessions where we found out from stakeholders that they were providing video content on DVDs to in-need citizens. This feature will streamline that process by making the videos available online for the first time. We are making use of YouTube to host. We’ll iterate on this in the coming weeks, reusing our styling and accessibility content for our new video player
  • Definitions can now be displayed through to users as a hover/tooltip feature. We will still write out definitions and acronyms in full the first time they are used, however subsequent mentions will now be available via a tooltip. This allows content to remain easy to read for people who are aware of terminology (such as our expected core readers for information about tax), whilst giving others the opportunity to continue to be able to see full definitions

Google Tag Manager

  • We’re transitioning to using Google’s Tag Manager to control our tagging setup – namely our ability to deploy Google Analytics tags. We’ve been able to make some huge improvements to our ability to implement tagging, respond to changes in the code and measure usage. We’re keen to share more about our setup over the coming weeks and to share some of our automated reporting spreadsheets for you performance people out there!

Publishing Platform

  • Improvements to the default filters for content items, helping to make it quicker for our content editors to find content that they have been working on
  • Ability for fact-checkers who work for external organisations to be able to access content on our site to review it before live. As the scope of our content grows it is important to be able to allow other external users to be able to review and suggest changes to our content
  • New markdown shortcodes to support definitions

Decommissioning tool 

  • Ability to create bulk redirects, saving time when matching old URLs to new URLs and to allow for the creation of redirects which contain regular expressions
  • These things are both essential to allow us to redirect content from bigger and more complex sites. We’ll be updating our decommissioning process blog post in the coming weeks to reflect our new process as well, as the tool has developed over time to support our overall approach

We’ll be posting a series of  blog posts with a more detailed breakdown of some of these features in the coming weeks.

We’ll be sharing updates on this feature (and much more) on social, so follow the team via @mygovscot on Twitter for more updates. Want to comment? Do so below!



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