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Dubbo Regional Council

Dubbo Regional Council is a local government area located in the Central West and Orana regions of New South Wales, Australia. The city has a population of over 50,000 and services a geographical area one-third of NSW. The Council maintains several websites covering the variety of businesses and facilities it owns, manages and operates, as well as tourism, investment and destination information.

The Challenge

In 2015, Elcom was selected as the platform and vendor for the main Council website. In 2018, the decision was made to bring the following sites onto the Elcom platform: Dubbo City Regional Airport, Dubbo Regional Livestock Markets and Dubbo Showground.

The previous Airport site was outdated and hosted a large amount of obsolete content. Along with a new platform, the Council required a new custom design for the site. The goal was to improve the user experience for both the people who require information about arriving or departing Dubbo by air, as well as the Dubbo team required to update and manage the content.

The Livestock Markets and Showgrounds sites receive significantly less website traffic and did not require a new custom design. These sites only required a consistent look and feel to match the main Council website and their values as a progressive and sustainable council.

The new look and feel, improved navigation, prominent calls to actions and information architecture, provide a consistent and user-friendly website experience, reinforces the Council brand and helps to attract more people to engage in the digital Dubbo experience. ,
Dubbo Regional Council

The Solution

Elcom project staff worked together with the Council staff to determine how these sites would be set up.

It was decided that the Airport site would be built as a multi-site. This would allow it to be accessed via the main Council website backend interface, while maintaining a separate URL - www.dubboairport.com.au.

Livestock Markets and Showground would be built as sub-sites. These sites would share the look and feel of the main Council site, with separate colour schemes and branding. Their URLs would have the main Council site - www.dubbo.nsw.gov.au - as the first part of their URL.

Elcom delivered the end-to-end project including design concepts, scoping out technical specs and creating new page templates, as well as training on the content editing environment for up to 10 staff who are responsible for managing or creating site content.

Dubbo City Regional Airport

The new Airport site delivers information in an uncluttered, easily accessible and mobile responsive way.

As a multi-site, it maintains its own identity and URL. For visitors, it looks like a standalone site from the main Council site. However, it still shares a database of content and images with the main Council site, enabling administrators to manage and view content across both sites in one administration interface.

 

The same functionality that is accessible on the main Council website is also available on the Airport site. This includes the use of Dynamic Widgets for the ‘Latest News’. When a new page is created under the News folder, it is automatically and dynamically displayed as a new animated tile where the widget is placed – in this instance, on the homepage and the news section. Publishers can also tag content to appear for related categories with the Taxonomy Manager.

Dubbo Regional Livestock Markets and Dubbo Showground

The new sites have a refreshed look and feel to reflect the current Dubbo Regional Council branding - bright, engaging and lifestyle focused, appearing professional but approachable.

The main Council website templates form the basis of the sites, with their own corporate branding, colours, fonts and site structure being applied.

As a sub-site, visitors can identify both sites as being part of the main Council website. For administrators, they appear as subfolders under the main Council site folder structure.

Dubbo Regional Council Drought Hub

As of late 2019, following on from the successful launch of the original three sites, the Council engaged Elcom to create a sub-site for their Drought Hub. This provides a central point of information for Dubbo residents and tourists regarding the drought conditions in Dubbo. The website can be viewed at www.dubbo.nsw.gov.au/droughthub

The Benefits

  • Consistent Branding and Experience
    The new look and feel, improved navigation, prominent calls to actions and information architecture, provide a consistent and user-friendly website experience, reinforces the Council brand and helps to attract more people to engage in the digital Dubbo experience.
  • Enhanced Customer Service
    Each site provides a central location for up-to-date and relevant information and communication for visitors, that is easily searchable and accessible. It also provides an alternative method of public enquiry to that of telephone and face-to-face enquiry. This in turn, improves customer service for residents and tourists requiring information relating the Council’s businesses and facilities.
  • Centralised Content Management
    The Dubbo team report an improved ease of use in managing multiple sites on a central and user-friendly platform, which utilises a shared database of documents and images. The sites also enjoy the same functionality as the main Council site, such as drag and drop online form creator and automated workflows.
  • Economies of Scale
    Deploying the Airport site as a multi-site enables Dubbo to deliver a standalone website for a fraction of the cost of a new platform licence. All multi-sites also benefit from an automatic upgrade if and when the main website is upgraded to the latest software version. Deploying sub-sites require no additional platform cost as it is simply an additional section within the main Council site.

 

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