In July 2014 the government adopted the Open Document Format (ODF) as its single standard for ‘sharing and collaborating’. This was the result of a thorough and careful public engagement and standards consideration process.
The benefits of ODF for sharing and collaborating on editable documents to the Home Office and its users are that its adoption:
- avoids imposing unnecessary costs of specific software on users including citizens, businesses, and public bodies
- enables a wider choice of software and technology for working with documents
- lowers barriers to entry for suppliers and developers
- establishes an open standard for greater cooperation between different systems, technologies and their suppliers
- avoids over-reliance on a single product or supplier, and encourages competition over the technology and services we buy
- ensures access to information into the long-term future, including for the public record
ODF is a comprehensive standard supporting many different features. It’s important to choose applications which support the latest version of the document standard (currently ODF 1.2) in order to access newer document features such as comments and change tracking.