State Agency Web Portal Replatforming

Virginia State agency critical to fire prevention and life safety was struggling to engage a diverse set of users with it’s inadequate website and related portals.  The Virginia Department of Fire Programs’ website was in disarray due to dated technology, confusing user experience, and expensive, but inadequate, proprietary tools. Most importantly the sites didn’t convey the important life saving role VDFP and the VA State Fire Marshals play in fire prevention and life safety  

Background image of GRC team

Client’s Challenge

1) Diverse set of users with different demands

  • Grant distribution
  • Training for Fire Prevention Professionals
  • Forms and publications for the public and professionals
  • Building and Fire Related Permitting
  • General information for VA citizens

2) Required Functionality

  • Ecommerce for bookstore and RCIP Registration
  • Public facing application for Product Registration
  • Web based forms for applications and feedback
  • Cloud based
  • VITA Sec 525 Compliance

3) Tight Budget

  • Replacing 3 different websites with a single site supporting old and new functionality


Impact Maker’s Solution

1) User Experience Design (UX)

  • User Experience Design exercises including design workshops, facilitated sessions, user interviews, and customer surveys
  • New site architecture and navigation promotes the key functions of the Agency

2) Custom Functionality Driven by Open Source Platform

  • Ecommerce functionality for bookstore and application process
  • Application Submission Workflow
  • Dashboards powered by Tableau

3) Cloud Infrastructure

  • Virginia Information Technologies Agency (VITA) approved vendor

Impact and Results

  • New workflow decreases the need for email interactions and ultimately
  • Backend reporting allows for better understanding of demands on department resources
  • Dashboards better communicates to the public and professionals
  • Improved Google Analytics based metrics
  • Site providing fewer 404 errors
  • Increased user time on the site and pages