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In a period of economic upheaval, with budgets squeezed more than ever before, it is vital to ensure that your council’s website works well as an efficient and effective provider of information and services to local citizens.

This high profile event combines a headline conference with a unique interactive format of roundtable sessions and pre-arranged meeting opportunities. This year’s event focuses on both current best practice and predicts future trends to keep you ahead of the game.

One key trend will be for council sites to work more and more closely with national public service and information portals such as Local DirectGov, NHS Choice and businesslink.gov.uk, and our opening plenary brings together senior figures from all these projects to brief and update you.

Elsewhere on the programme leading experts and analysts will offer insights and practical advice into many other important trends including the rise of Web 2.0; how to make sure your CEO and councillors will support your web projects; accessibility; usability; and managing the website improvement process. In the afternoon, one of the world’s leading experts in developing customer-focused websites, Gerry McGovern, is back after a hugely popular session last year to develop his powerful themes of task management and citizen focus.

With break-out sessions, discussion groups and workshops throughout the day homing in on further topics of interest, and a closing plenary on what the future holds for council websites – ‘Visions Of The Future: Social, Mobile And 3-Dimensional’ – this year’s conference is unmissable. The programme covers all aspects of creating a successful site, from high-level strategic issues such as ensuring a focus on the citizen to detailed hands-on advice such as user registration and customisation; and web form accessibility.

So bring your whole web team, and prepare to be educated, entertained and informed at the event of the year for all local authority webmasters, and anyone involved in creating content and managing or delivering services for councils via the web.

Enhanced networking and knowledge exchange … new for 2009!

Building Perfect Council Websites typically brings together more than 300 participants, including many of the best local authority webmasters from across the UK.

So to maximise the sharing of best practice all participants at this year’s event will be able to create their own bespoke networking programme that integrates their chosen conference sessions, with discussion groups and pre-arranged meetings with other participants.