Why Joomla Is a Good Choice for Government Websites

We have worked on many government websites powered by Joomla, either directly (through direct contracts with government agencies) or indirectly as sub-contractors. We always love working on government projects, mainly because the requirements are very clear upfront and they are usually very challenging!

Today, the owner of a company for which we were sub-contracted to work on a Joomla government website asked us a question: “Why do you think we have so many government agencies using Joomla to power their websites?” We answered: “It’s because Joomla is a good choice for government websites.” His immediate, and logical answer was: “Why?” (We were sure that he knew the answer, but he wanted to hear it from us…).

We said it’s because of the following 10 reasons:

  1. Most government websites must adopt a specific template set at either the federal or the state/provincial level (depending on the type of the agency). For example, in Canada, all federal websites must have the same theme (colors, fonts, links, layout, etc…)

    In Joomla, it’s easy to create a template that complies with the federal/state/provincial requirements and apply that template to all the pages of the website.

  2. Government agencies like to use a mainstream CMS (although it’s not mandatory) – and what could be a better, more stable, and more powerful CMS than Joomla?

  3. Many government websites have been using Joomla for a long time now – some have been using Joomla since it was called Mambo. The administrators of these government websites are quite fond of using Joomla because they’ve used it for many years now and it’s easy for them to change the content on their websites in a relatively short amount of time. They also know what they can do and they cannot do (but can be done by Joomla experts) on this CMS.

  4. Joomla has many built-in features that are basic requirements for many government websites. For example: allowing visitors to download PDF versions of the articles, allowing visitors to print articles, a versatile contact us form, a built-in global search, etc…

  5. It is not that hard to learn Joomla as we’ve explained before – which is convenient for government agencies since they don’t like the maintenance of their websites to be complicated (in fact, we are working on migrating a government website from a proprietary CMS to Joomla because the proprietary CMS was too complicated and restrictive).

  6. Government agencies try to avoid being held hostages by companies that developed their CMS in case they (the government agencies) need support or they need to add new features. If they use Joomla, these government agencies do not have this problem because there are many commercial companies out there supporting Joomla, including itoctopus. This means that government agencies will have better prices (because of the competition) when bidding for any project on their Joomla website, and they will also have better quality!

    Also, Joomla is open source, which means that even if the Joomla project is no more, then support for Joomla as a product would still be possible by 3rd party companies!

  7. Joomla is able to gracefully handle the traffic of most government websites (with the exception of large websites, such as that of the IRS), since these websites only receive a few thousand visits a day (at best) – which is well in the range of the number of users that Joomla can handle without scaling it.

  8. Joomla can work in any environment – even on a Windows environment – and can be customized to work with an RDBMS other than MySQL. This means that if the government agency wishes to host its website in-house then it can do that with Joomla, regardless of the environment/infrastructure it has in its premises.

  9. Joomla is possibly the most extensible CMS on this planet – this extensibility (through 3rd party Joomla extensions) allows government agencies to easily add more features to their websites to better serve their visitors. For example, a government agency can use JEvents to list its upcoming events on its website. Another example is a government agency using VirtueMart to sell souvenirs to its visitors.

  10. Joomla is free, which means that the procurement step to get this CMS is eliminated, which in its turn means that the decision making process for choosing Joomla is faster – as it’ll only be based on benefits/alignment, and not costs (another reason why there are many government websites using Joomla).

Are you a government agency looking to adopt Joomla and not sure where you should start? We’re here to help! Just contact us and we’ll be more than happy to guide you through the process of adopting Joomla and adapting it to your needs! Our rates are affordable, we are located in North America (in Montreal, specifically), our work ethics are great, and we’re very, very fast!

2 Responses to “Why Joomla Is a Good Choice for Government Websites”
  1. Pingback by An Intelligent Approach to URL Canonicalization in Joomla | itoctopus — September 23, 2012 @ 11:46 am

    […] website from scratch for a government agency (many government agencies use Joomla – see why Joomla is a good choice for government websites). Naturally, the project has an SEO aspect – and for such a huge project, you can imagine the […]

  2. Pingback by NDAs: What We Think of Them and When We Sign Them | itoctopus — October 3, 2012 @ 11:41 pm

    […] for the past several years – these projects ranged in size from very small projects to large, governmental projects. From time to time, we have a project where the client asks us to sign an NDA (Non-disclosure […]

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