Victorian Government Publications can now be found on

The website recently released a new section called Publications due to the recent closure of the Victorian Government Bookshop. This section provides an extensive  list of online publications from across the Victorian Government – from Government Reports to the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) Study Designs. All publications can be downloaded or viewed from various Victorian Government departments and agency websites.

Each item listing contains a title and description for each publication. This is assigned against a publication type which also lists a sub-total of the number of publications included within each type.

Currently we have:

  • Brochure (24)
  • Guidelines (4)
  • Handbook (15)
  • Report (84)
  • Study Design (104)
  • Template (1)
  • Toolkit (13)
  • Victorian Maps (4)


By selecting one of these category types, you can narrow your display results to a specific subset.

The default listing for publications is alphabetical. You can filter by Publication Type, Subject Category or Department/Agency. The page also displays the three most recently added items.

You can also search within the Publications section to find specific items.

An RSS feed  is also available for regular updates to this section.

Listing additional online government publications within this section will continue as new ones are released. If you discover any relevant publications missing from here, please let us know; we welcome your feedback.


Online Government Services are now easier to find for Victorians

The website has just released a new section called Services Victoria. This section provides an extensive list of online government services from across the Victorian State Government – from renewing your driver’s licence to booking a camping site.

Services Victoria

Services Victoria


The criteria for inclusion in this section is that it must be a “doing thing” that is action oriented (and no that does not include downloading a pdf!).

Each online service listing contains an abstract describing each service. This is assigned against an action category which also lists a sub-total of the number of services included within it.




Currently we have:

  • Apply or Pay (100)
  • Book (13)
  • Change or Check (14)
  • Register (32)
  • Renew (9)
  • Report (24)

By selecting one of these categories, you can narrow your display results to a specific subset.

The default listing for Victorian Government departments and agency services is alphabetical. You can filter by Action category, Subject category or Department/Agency. The home page for this new section also displays the three most recently added items.

You can also search within the Services Victoria section to find specific Victorian Government services.

Listing additional government services within this section will continue as new services are brought online. If you discover relevant services are missing from here, please let us know; we welcome your feedback.


The website has published a new hotlines page. This page lists a range of hotlines from various Victorian Government departments and agencies. To access the page, click on the ‘Hotlines’ link in the large footer. The hotlines are listed alphabetically by title. Each column can be sorted by clicking on the arrow on the column heading (Title, Department or Phone). On your smartphone, you can call the hotline directly.


Recent site changes on

You may have noticed some subtle changes on the website:

  • Victorian Government text in header – we have made it obvious for the user that they have reached the Victorian Government website;
  • Default text in search box – the text now disappears when a user starts entering a search term;
  • Removal of Browse button – we had a ‘Browse’ button underneath our large search box. Analysis highlighted that not many users clicked on this button. Search is always the winner and it’s possible that users may not know what ‘Browse’ actually means. Ongoing analysis will reveal whether we have made the right decision;
  • Widgets – a new feature. We are now highlighting the ‘Victorian Government Careers’ widget as well as linking to a new widget section where other widgets are listed.
  • Fat footer – added a new fat footer to ease navigation to popular content as well as previous browse topics.

Victorian Government home page


We have added a new section on the website – Consultations. All consultations from Victorian Government departments and agencies are listed alphabetically. You can also filter by Category, Status or Department/Agency. The page also displays the 3 recently added items. You can also search using the Consultations search box to narrow down your search.

Consultations -

Mobile access to – what devices are our visitors using?

We are constantly working on improving access to our site for our visitors using mobile devices (both phone and tablet).

Our audience analysis tells us that 15.2% or our visitors access the site from a phone and 10.2% from a tablet device.

Pie chart showing the device categories which are used to access - desktop 74.7%, mobile 15.2% and tablet 10.2%

Our most popular content accessed from mobile devices includes grants information, power blackouts, school holiday information, traffic and road alerts, daylight saving, job vacancies, first home owner grants, public holidays, justices of the peace and tollways.

Our tablet traffic is predominantly from the Apple iPad (93.4%), followed by the Samsung (4%); the rest is made up from devices such as the Google Nexus 7 and various others.

Our mobile phone traffic is predominantly Apple iPhone (64.6%) however the percentage is a lot smaller than for tablet as far as Apple is concerned. The next most popular device used to access our site is the Samsung at 21%.

How does this compare with statistics gathered from elsewhere?

The Australian Mobile Phone Lifestyle Index (AMPLI) published October 2013 provides survey results regarding mobile phone ownership and how it has grown over the past four years.

“The results show a clear and steady increase in the popularity of Apple handsets over the last four years, although Samsung had a more significant increase in uptake compared to Apple over the last year. In 2013, 28 per cent of respondents own a Samsung mobile phone, up from 18 per cent in 2012. Apple ownership only increased by 5 per cent from 40 per cent in 2012 to 45 per cent in 2013. Nokia has experienced a decline in ownership with a decrease of 7 per cent from 16 per cent to 9 per cent.” – Source: 9TH EDITION OF THE AMPLI REPORT

The complete AMPLI report shows the increase in popularity of Apple iPhone from 21% in 2010 to 45% in 2013, Samsung has increased from 12% in 2010 to 28% in 2013, but Nokia on the other hand has decreased in popularity from 41% in 2010 to 9% in 2013.

The report is available to download at (registration is required).

StatCounter has provided a useful tool which graphically represents the top ten mobile vendors in Australia – this shows Apple iPhone slightly on the decline and Samsung increasing. StatCounter has been monitoring this movement worldwide.

Source: StatCounter Global Stats – Mobile Vendor Market Share

The Australian Bureau of Statistics reports

“As at 30 June 2013 there were 19.6 million subscribers with internet access connections via a mobile handset in Australia, an increase of 13% from 17.4 million subscribers at the end of December 2012…” Source: 8153.0 – Internet Activity, Australia, June 2013.

What does this mean for us in developing our state portal? We have to be mindful of what devices people use to access our site and also how fast the mobile device market is growing in Australia. We commenced our responsive design project for this site long before it was widely recognised as the best approach to take to provide access for people using the mobile web. One of our next steps will be be to incorporate tablet considerations into our responsive iteration.

Watch this space!

Mobile testing of the site

In March 2013, we launched a re-designed website using responsive design that adapts to mobile devices.

A screenshot of the mobile website home page

Between 25th July and the 2nd August 2013 we conducted a round of mobile website user testing to try and understand the following:

1. in general, how does the mobile site perform for people in terms of finding information and their efficiency and satisfaction in interacting with the site?

2. what is their general perception of the mobile site?

3. how does the mobile site compare to the website across task and touch points?

The method we used was a scenario based remote behavioural testing on various types of mobile devices. People were recruited to perform specific tasks using their own devices. Each device automatically recorded how they went about finding information on the site.

The study involved 150 participants, 100% Australian adults, currently living in Victoria, 55% were female and 45% male. They age ranged in age from 18 years and older, but slight skewed toward younger generations – generally reflecting the uptake of mobile adoption within the Victorian community.

Below is a percentage breakdown of the age ranges of the participants (the 18-25 year olds and the 26-35 year olds collectively making up 52% of participants).

Age pie chart showing the breakdown of the Victorian population used for mobile testing: 18-15 27%; 26-35 25%; 36-45 19%; 46-55 20%; 56-65 4% 66 plus 4%

There were 4 tasks set for the study participants to perform.

Task 1

  • Unclaimed money – the task was to use the site to find the overview page – with information about how to claim Tattslotto winnings.
  • Success rate was 77%

Task 2

  • Occupational Health and Safety – the task was to use the site to find the relevant Legislative Act about workplace safety
  • Success rate was 54%

Task 3

  • Find contact details – the task was to find and write down the email address for the Minister for Emergency Services
  • Success rate was 71%

Task 4

  • Event – the task was to find and write down the start date for the Great Victorian Bike Ride
  • Success rate was 88%.

There were strong initial impressions of the mobile site

Graph comparing the testers initial impressions of the mobile version of the site to the web version of the site

In all cases mobile exceeded web for

  • The page appears to offer a clear starting point to find information
  • The page is uncluttered, allowing me to easily find information on the page
  • The page appears to offer information that meet my needs
  • It appears to be easy to find the contact phone number

The overall scorecard for mobile was 69.1%

  • Effectiveness (Task success) was 71.9%
  • Efficiency (Task clicks and completion time)  53.9%
  • Satisfaction (Customer evaluation) 78.8%

Summary of findings

  • The mobile site overall received a good experience score of 69% and overall better than the website 59.8%
  • Initial impressions of the mobile site was good (average 7.9/10) compared to web (average 6.9/10). In particular, high scores for a clear starting point and for being uncluttered.
  • Overall, tasks on the mobile site have a higher success rate and better efficiency score.
  • Despite a good satisfaction score of 79%, the satisfaction with the mobile site is slightly less than for the website
  • Mobile site performs significantly better for finding information for unclaimed money, whereas the website performs significantly better for finding contact details for emergency services.
  • 87% indicated that they would recommend the services offered by to friends and family, slightly lower than the 93% for the website; and 77% would recommend the mobile site
  • Searching is generally more successful than browsing – but the search bar needs to be fixed so all pre-entered data clears when a search/new search is started.

The complete report is available for you to read: DSDBI Mobile Behavioural Study Q313 Final - in pdf format (4006kb). (This document requires the use of Adobe Acrobat Reader).

We are planning to conduct a follow up study early in 2014 after we have addressed issues and pain points discovered as part of this exercise – so watch this space!