What does a Publishing Officer at the Office for National Statistics do? This is a question that I have been asked by friends and family members a lot since I accepted my offer to become a Publishing Officer at the ONS.
Over the past three months, I have grown more confident answering this question as I have been able to shadow current Publishing Officers, practice building existing releases in the development site and publish live releases onto the ONS website.
I can now say that a Publishing Officer is responsible for working with business areas to build and publish their releases on the ONS website. Whilst working with the Content Design team to ensure that releases adhere to house style, are accessible for all users and can be easily understood by mass audiences.
Everyone has experienced that new job feeling, it’s like a mixture of nervousness as you are stepping into the unknown and excitement as you are starting a journey, learning new things and meeting different people. I had that feeling for sure, but the team have been welcoming and good teachers of the various processes within Digital Publishing. It has also been interesting seeing behind the scenes of releases and how they come together, from the creation stages in Florence to the final publication on the ONS website.
The pillars of Digital Publishing
An essential purpose of the team is to meet the needs of the different business areas and assist them in getting their content out to their intended audiences. A crucial part of helping business areas is putting the users at the heart of everything we do to ensure that all published content is accessible and understandable. I also found that team and personal wellbeing is a vital part of the success of the wider team and helping the structure of keeping everyone involved, supported and informed.
The key to success
The main priority of the Publishing team is to publish releases on time, free-from errors, and in an accessible format for all users. We also strive to help business areas to understand the publishing processes and how they fit into the publishing ecosystem.
The bonuses of working in Digital Publishing
The variety of requests and releases that you can work on is always changing, which is excellent for learning about the different requirements for each release and meeting new people from across the ONS network. The different releases are also helpful for staying informed about current affairs (COVID-19 and so on) and exploring new areas of research being conducted by departments across the ONS.
Each week I am always learning new things. The most important of these so far is understanding all the aspects to consider when publishing different types of releases. My notepad is getting pretty full of helpful tips. Overall, I have enjoyed joining the Digital Publishing team, meeting loads of new people and publishing awesome content on the ONS website.