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December 7, 2007

Dear Friend:

On our website we share information with the public about our licensees. People turn to us for information about professionals, and we have many who look to our website for information about results of restaurant inspections. It should be tremendously useful to consumers. But earlier this summer we discovered serious design flaws.
 
Our great Information Technology team worked diligently to improve our search functions, but because of limitations in the original system, their ability to make improvements was fundamentally constrained.
 
And then we found Google.
 
This Monday we joined the Governor in announcing an important partnership between the state of Florida and Google. Google has been helping DBPR and several other agencies catalog the information on their websites in order to make it more user-friendly.
 
Under the existing system, if you wanted to hire a contractor, you might go to Google, Yahoo or MSN and search for the contractor’s name and location.  While that search might return many results from the search engine, there’s a good chance none of those would be from our site even though we might have very meaningful information on that contractor.
 
Under the new improved system, our team is working with Google to develop sitemaps that will allow search engines to more intelligently mine data from our website.  Sitemaps are essentially spreadsheets for our website that prioritize the information on our website for the search engines.
 
Our team is now busy putting hundreds of thousands of records in our sitemaps to make our information more useful to you. So soon you’ll be able to go to Google, type in John Smith Contractor Gainesville and see if he’s licensed or type in Grandma’s Kitchen Main Street Oviedo and see if they passed their most recent inspection.
 
We believe that you and the public are essential in holding us accountable and in holding our licensees accountable.  With this new improved tool and this invaluable public-private partnership, we are making great strides in improving our service to you.

Sincerely,
Secretary Benson Signature
Holly Benson
Secretary

Department of Business and
Professional Regulation

1940 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Customer Contact Center:
850.487.1395

www.MyFloridaLicense.com

Board Schedule header

Here is a schedule of next week’s professional board meetings. For full meeting details, we’ve included a link
below to the department’s online calendar.

December 11, 2007
BOARD OF VETERINARY MEDICINE

ORLANDO

December 11-12, 2007
FLORIDA REAL ESTATE COMMISSION
ORLANDO

December 11-14, 2007
BUILDING CODE ADMINISTRATORS
TALLAHASSEE

December 12, 2007
BOARD OF AUCTIONEERS
ST. AUGUSTINE

PROFESSIONAL BOARD NEWSLETTERS
published this week:
Building Code Administrators and Inspectors
To download a free copy, visit:
www.myflorida.com/dbpr/os/newsletters.html

Google start page screen shot

Governor Charlie Crist has announced a partnership between the state of Florida and Google improving our service to you by making information more useful and easier to find.

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