The National Labor Relations Board yesterday in Houston launched a new agency website that is more flexible, timely, easy to navigate, and useful to a variety of audiences, from practitioners to first-time visitors.
The redesigned and re-imagined site builds on an overarching effort toward greater transparency and efficiency at the NLRB, which enforces federal labor laws covering most private sector employment. The new website is also a reflection of Chairman Wilma Liebman’s advocacy for a more open and engaged agency.
Some of the features of the new website are:
More case information is available more quickly than ever before. All Board decisions are now posted to the site at the time they are issued, rather than after a three-day holding period. The Board is also for the first time posting unpublished decisions, which do not appear in the official bound volumes of Board decisions. Additional documents from Washington and the regional offices not previously available will be posted to the site over time.
The website showcases a new case-management system that has been coming online at the agency for more than a year, and will be deployed to all regional offices by the end of this fiscal year. The new single system replaces 13 separate case tracking systems, and will allow for seamless searches that cover the entire life of a case at the agency. Each case is assigned its own page, where information and documents are posted. More information and documents will be added over time as the rollout of the new system is completed.
For the first time, the agency’s 32 regional offices – where all cases and elections begin – are prominently highlighted in the new site. An interactive map shows regional boundaries and allows visitors to quickly locate their own regional office. One click away is a page for each region that lists top officials and features newsletters, news releases and local cases and decisions.
A data section tracks NLRB activities over the years by the numbers. The section launches with eight charts and tables covering a variety of indicators, from charges filed to back pay collected. More charts and tables, with greater interactivity, will be added through the year.
Improved navigation will make it far easier for visitors to find their way, and new pages explain the NLRB processes and functions in accessible language. At the same time, all the case-handling manuals, memos and forms found on the old website will be available on the new one.
Other development include increased use of press releases to describe activities in Washington and the regions, a subscription service that allows users to choose email delivery of press releases, decisions and memos, and active Face book and Twitter accounts.