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Avoid Putting Employee Information on Your Public Website

What It Is

Focusing your public website on information for the public – not on information specific to your agency’s employees – is a best practice for managing your agency's website. Use intranets or extranets to provide information for your employees.

Why It’s Important

  • Real estate on your public website – particularly the homepage – is valuable and should be focused on the most important needs of the public, not of agency employees.
  • It can confuse the public to post information intended for employees on your public site.

Specific Policy, Legal or Other Requirements for Doing This

This is a best practice, not a requirement. However, there are two sections of the OMB Policies for Federal Agency Public Websites that refer to the need to provide relevant information to the public:

  • Section 1A: “disseminate information to the public in a timely, equitable, efficient and appropriate manner”
  • Section 2A: “maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information and services provided to the public”

By focusing on information for the public -- rather than employees -- you will help the public find what they need more efficiently and improve your services to them.

How to Implement

  • If your agency's public website has content that is intended only for your agency's employees, move the content to an intranet or to an extranet, with password protection.
  • If your agency or organization doesn't have or cannot acquire an intranet or extranet, then work to put employee information in a separate, clearly labeled part of your website. This will show the public that the information is not intended for them.
  • If your website has content that is valuable to both the public and employees, it's fine to post that information on the public website.


Many federal public websites follow this best practice. This practice is part of the guidelines and best practices published by the Interagency Committee on Government Information to aid agencies' implementation of OMB Policies for Public Websites.


Page Updated or Reviewed: December 14, 2005


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