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Departments lack common targets for implementing open-document standards

Computer Weekly - Whitehall departments have begun to publish their plans on how to implement the government’s open-document standards policy – but so far, each appears to be working to very different timescales. One department – the Treasury – has stated it won’t see full implementation until as late as 2018.

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and the Treasury have published their plans so far. The Treasury said it will not be fully implementing the mandated open-document standard until February 2018, three years after other departments.

The standard called the Open Document Format (ODF) was chosen by the government in July 2014 to standardise document formats across the public sector, with PDF and HTML also approved for viewing files.

In September 2014, government departments were told to publish their implementation plans, which are expected to trickle through over the coming month.

Instead of the Cabinet Office publishing a single plan for all of the government, it seems to be the case individual departments will follow their own plans without any common targets.