Websites are an extension of an organization on the internet designed to serve many purposes to its intended users. One of the most important functions of a website is to provide information to its visitors. If a website fails to provide information to its intended visitors, then no matter how beautiful or well designed the website is, it becomes useless to its visitors. A website is meant to provide sufficient information concerning most aspects of an organization that it represents. Many organizations keep certain aspects of their corporate activities away from their websites but every other aspect of the organization that should be represented on the site must be done so in a clear and precise manner.

Job hunters like myself at the moment spend a considerable amount of our time browsing the career sections of websites searching for possible Job positions we can fill. These career sections provide detailed information about current vacancies in an organization and how to go about applying for these positions. It also gives the applicant an idea of the organization’s culture and beliefs and the kind of people they want working for them. If there are no vacancies, it is clearly stated and occasionally, certain organizations will provide information about the periods of the year they post vacancies.

This is unfortunately not the case with many organizations in Nigeria today. In fact, most Government owned websites and certain privately owned websites in Nigeria fail in this regard. They provide insufficient or no information whatsoever regarding vacancies in their organization. They leave you wondering how they employ people to work for them. The Government websites are the most culpable in this practice. It is understandable if they do not even have a career section on their website, but for those that do have one, you are often left with a dead link leading to an error page or a blank page with little or no information. The latter often being the case. You can’t help but feel frustrated when you land at such a page because you are left uninformed and in most cases, there is no mechanism put in place to report such issues. A simple message stating that “There are no Current Vacancies” would have sufficed but an empty page or an error page shows the attitude of the organization towards finding new employees.

There should be clear standards governing the design and administration of Government owned websites but it is clear to see that these sites are not regulated because if they were, there would be no dead links. This is only one aspect of a general problem with the standard of websites that represent our Government institutions in Nigeria. The development of general standards, and a regulatory body that would enforce the implementation of these standards to every Government website would be a good starting point in the resolution of this problem.

Okey Chima

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