What Does the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (IDEA) Mean for Federal Agencies?


It is exciting to see the federal government’s recent drive to provide a better digital experience for citizens through the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (IDEA).  Signed into law in December 2018, this legislation requires all federal agencies to make digital transformation a priority.

As part of the requirement for website modernization, the new regulation will require federal agencies to update their public-facing websites to provide the following:

  • Consistency in appearance 
  • Ability for users to easily search content
  • Elimination of any duplication of legacy websites
  • Improvements in accessibility for individuals with disabilities (which is somewhat redundant with existing Section 508 mandates)
  • Tests using data analytics of the website, web-based form or web-based application to influence decisions that address user needs
  • Fully functional mobile-friendly versions 
  • Standardization of websites and digital content, to the extent possible, with other agencies 
  • Ability for users to complete digital transactions accurately and efficiently, and
  • A more “customized digital experience” for all federal agency websites, web-based forms, web-based applications, and digital services  

This new act details specific timelines for agencies to assess their digital presence and report key metrics to Congress, including their most viewed websites and digital services, as well as their requirements for modernization, along with a schedule and cost for doing so.  The legislation also promotes digital forms and e-signatures by requiring agencies to make every paper-based form, paper-based process or in-person government service available in a digital format, eliminating paper.  

The good news is that this mandate can help agencies make a case for much needed funding to enhance the digital experience of users.   At the same time, it requires agencies to take a deep-dive into determining ways of making this possible.  Artemis Consulting has extensive experience in outcomes-based assessments, as well as development and implementation of digital transformation strategies for delivering information and services to citizenry.  We believe agencies embracing this legislation will have an excellent opportunity to assess their digital services and identify gaps and areas to enhance the customer experience they provide to the public.  

Stay tuned for more blogs about IDEA and the types of digital solutions that will be necessary for federal agencies to implement to meet its requirements!