Renovation or a totally new architecture?
Often clients come to Intergen asking: do we undertake renovations to what we’ve got or will we gain significantly more through a total architectural rethink? It was a clear cut decision for the Ministry of Tourism’s research team, when Intergen demonstrated the wins that could be made by instituting EPiServer architecture as the platform to redevelop their existing CMS based tourism research website.
Not only did the recommendation have the weight of a five-year long-term partnership between Intergen and the Ministry of Tourism, but also comparable business gains were on the table, demonstrated by successful EPiServer projects completed by Intergen for the Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism’s umbrella organisation. Common goals demonstrated the leverage that could be made, and the strategy was set to redesign their existing and ageing website and bring it into the fully supported and flexible EPiServer environment.
It was time to totally redevelop the home of New Zealand’s official tourism dataset, by providing a clean, well structured website to support this country’s tourism industry stakeholders.
“It was a case of leveraging off a path that had already proven hugely effective for the Ministry of Economic Development, and weighing up the impressive range of features that came straight out of the box with EPiServer – together that made the strategy pretty compelling.” Mark Miller, Web Analyst, Ministry of Tourism Research.
The home of New Zealand’s official tourism dataset gets an EPiServer boost.
The website delivers big picture information right down to grass roots analysis for tourism industry stakeholders. It supports a range of users from tourism operators to academics, local government groups and international tourism organisations. Meaty and wide-ranging data, analysis, tourism publications and research sits on this site, making easy navigation a key requirement. The Ministry of Tourism engaged the services of Optimal Usability to research the needs of users and provided the Intergen development team with an exceptional brief for moving forward.
Mark Miller says, “Several areas within our existing site were found wanting. Intergen, with a good knowledge of our business, invested a considerable amount of work and resources at the design and development stage so the project would deliver everything we wanted as smoothly as possible.” He adds, “We also wanted to take advantage of other opportunities such as making a visual redesign of the site, to not only improve the look and feel but our branding as well. Navigation was a big area to address and we also had the opportunity to introduce a tiered search mechanism aimed at different levels of stakeholders using our site.”
Clean, green and easy to get around. Just like New Zealand itself.
The new Ministry of Tourism Research website has delivered on all priorities. Navigation is simple and intuitive and a three-tiered approach to data dissemination enables stakeholders to access information areas at a depth appropriate to their needs – from a high level general overview to a Power User mechanism that can access Citrix databases. Mark Miller cites other major improvements. He says, “Administratively speaking, the site is much easier to maintain and it’s easier to update content in highly viewed areas. We have the ability to maintain registered users more easily. Really Simple Syndication allows for easy notification of new content and these alerts are a good added value feature for our users. We’ve had excellent feedback from the tourism industry since we went live with the new site in late May.”
The tourism sector now has a smart, information rich, go-to tourism research website that effectively supports planning and decision making.