Cost of IPSA's new website
UPDATE: We originally responded to this request on 25 October. In response, the costs requested were withheld under section 22 of the FOIA, which relates to information intended for future publication. Following an internal review, this decision was overturned. As such, please find below our updated response. (9 December 2016)
As part of wider improvements to IPSA’s systems and processes, we promised to create a new public website by the end of 2016.
The development of the website has taken place in three phases. The first is the discovery phase. This is a short phase, in which the needs of the service’s users are researched and explore technological or policy-related constraints are explored.
The second phase is the alpha phase, where the prototype website is created. This version of the site does not contain all of the features that are planned for the final version and is often unstable. As such, it was not made public. The cost of this phase was £99,763.80.
The third phase is the beta phase. The objective of the beta phase is to build a working version of the service based on your alpha prototypes. This site will not contain all of the content planned for the final version, but should provide a stable framework. The beta (draft) version of the website is now available to review at www.theipsa.org.uk. The cost of this phase was £33,685.20. While the website is in beta form, we hope to get feedback so we can improve it before its formal launch in the coming weeks, although no final date has yet been set. We are planning to go live with the final site by the end of 2016.
Further, the development work undertaken during the discovery phase and since the launch of the beta site cost £93,339.00.
In addition, like all websites, our new website incurs monthly hosting charges. These costs are not associated with the development of the new website and replace the monthly hosting charges for the old site, www.parliamentarystandards.org.uk. The total cost of these charges from July 2016 to date is £34,937.74.
Our website helps us meet IPSA’s statutory objective of providing assurance to the public that MPs’ expenditure is appropriate and independently regulated. As such, we have upgraded and simplified the layout of the website to make it easier to see that each MP's expenditure is wholly and exclusively for parliamentary purposes, including a dedicated page on each MP’s spending. There is also space for any commentary from MPs which we are currently piloting. We have included a graph showing each MP’s annual expenditure in order to demonstrate to the public that the majority of your money is spent on your staff to support your parliamentary and constituency work and virtually none on ‘expenses’.
We look forward to receiving any other comments over the coming weeks; feedback on the new website can be made via the link provided at the top of the page.
At the time of responding, one individual is employed on a full-time basis to produce IPSA's new website.
We do not hold an estimate for the cost upon completion.
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- 24 October 2016
- IPSA - FINANCIALIPSA - OPERATIONSIPSA - STAFF
- Exemptions Applied: