RaleighNC.gov, a new way to engage citizens

Presenters: jcrespo

Raleigh puts city services front and center

Roughly 3 in 4 Raleigh residents say RaleighNC.gov is their top source of information about the City. These users have varying technical skill and they need to engage the City in a variety of ways. The diversity of the audience and breadth of content on the City’s website posed a significant challenge.

As organizations, municipalities are typically structured as a series of semi-autonomous departments: fire, police, transportation, sanitation, etc. As a result, many municipalities orient their websites around their departmental org chart. This is not an intuitive structure for residents: navigating a website department-by-department is confusing to people who just want to pay their water bill or find a park.

The City of Raleigh redesigned their website with a service-first approach. This approach upends the typical municipal website organization, represents a new way for local government to engage residents, and opens up new opportunities for citizens to engage civic life.

This session will discuss:

  • The steps the City of Raleigh took to get ready for a website migration.
  • Why Raleigh chose Drupal.
  • Why Raleigh took a service-first approach to website architecture. 
  • How Raleigh engaged constituents and various departments.

This case study will provide a model for other public sector entities to follow for their own website architecture, and provide tactical guidance for developers and architects engaging in human-centered design projects.

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Content Strategy and Analytics