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Sep 08 2021
Sep 08

This week, September 5-11, 2021, has been set aside as National Suicide Prevention Week

Suicide has reached epidemic proportions in the United States, with each year adding another dark chapter to the to rising trajectory. 

Stemming the tide and saving lives calls for a complex mix of solutions. Key among is bringing the topic out of the shadows and onto the table, with a greater awareness of helpful and easily accessible resources and support.

That’s why we at Promet Source were so honored this year for the opportunity to partner with Marin County, California, Behavioral Health and Recovery Services, in the design and development of a new Drupal site for Prevention and Outreach.

Encouraging, Engaging, Easy

The objectives for the new site centered on the creation of a comforting community hub, that fueled awareness of and interaction with the full scope of available services, including vetted and recommended community resources, events, and community connections. 

Many of these resources had previously been buried within the main Behavioral Health website.

Recognizing that reaching community members who are in critical need of support
means that resources needs to be not just easy to find, but comforting and encouraging, the site’s UX allows for access to all resources directly from the home page. Resources are presented in meaningful categories that include Suicide Prevention, Parenting & Families, Schools & Educators, and Mindfulness & Self Care.

All critical hotline phone numbers are displayed prominently on the home page, and repeated again on the footer of every page. Within every section, opportunities to get help are highlighted.

A handwritten script-like font on the home page, along with rounded corners on the photos and a contemporary UX, contributes to a comforting, human touch.

Content Editor Empowerment

Also essential was a flexible CMS that could be easily updated with a drag-and-drop design functionality, enabling stakeholders and content editors to make revisions, as needed, without ever needing to touch the site’s underlying code. 

The CMS platform needed to be one that could be richly and easily expanded upon by members of the Prevention and Outreach Team, without needing to reach out to the IT department or ever touch the underlying code.

Promet’s Provus solution enables content editors to easily work with established design components to update content, add functionality and switch up layouts as needed.
 
Our recent engagement with Marin County’s Behavioral Health and Recovery Services Prevention and Outreach Team has inspired us to package a web solution that can be easily deployed by other local governments. 
 
Contact us to learn about a ready-to-deploy site with UX that is inherently comforting and encouraging, and provides easy access to a wide range of resources, while allowing for easy updates and revisions. 
 
 

Sep 01 2021
Sep 01

More so than ever before, the public sector is relying on websites to handle a depth and breadth of heavy lifting -- serving as a central information hub, providing a venue for taking care of official business, advancing civic pride, alerting citizens to weather and public health emergencies, and a lot more. 

Covid-19 sharpened the focus on the importance of government websites being able to step up and multi-task. That trend is shows no signs of reversing.

Essential objectives for government sites share much in common with private sector sites -- easy navigation, robust search capabilities, and a consistent application of design elements -- but in the current environment, government websites present distinct challenges and opportunities.

Multi-tasking Mission

Leveraging the power of Drupal to design and develop expectation-exceeding websites for public sector clients at every level, we at Promet Source have honed a distinct expertise in the build of government sites that can function on many levels.

The process begins with a true understanding of the evolving role of public sector websites, followed by a  commitment to diligent discovery and active listening to the needs to stakeholders. 

Here are the top five factors that we’ve identified as the essential differentiators between government and private sector sites.

1. Public sector sites need to serve every demographic group.

While the targeted niche for a private sector site often encompasses a wide spectrum, government sites, have an inherent need to serve everyone. Creating web experiences that appeal to and accommodate the user journeys and needs of every age group, education level, income level, and comfort zone with technology, as well as people with disabilities, requires a significant balancing act. 

An in-depth discovery process is required to set the stage for a successful outcome. Adept information architecture skills also very much come into play in the process of creating a user experience that streamlines navigation and simplifies access to a wide and disparate range of information and resources for the full spectrum of users.

And easy navigation is just the start. Public sector sites also need to be engaging, reassuring, familiar, service oriented, and always aim for a subtle "WOW!-that-was-easy" factor.

Southern District of New York website

Southern District of New York websiteThe Southern District of New York's redesigned site focuses on the needs of a wide range and disparate range of of personas including staff, jurors, attorneys, judges, the local and national media, as well as individuals caught up in the court system.    

 

2. Community building is a core objective.

In many respects, government sites are now serving as a virtual town square --  the place where connections are made, information is exchanged, essential tasks are completed, and messages concerning what sets the community apart and what it stands for are reinforced. 

While private sector sites tend are likely to have one, clearly defined and singularly focused mission, the success of government sites hinges on multiple factors. 
The design of a government website needs to account for the likelihood that it might be visited and viewed simply for purposes of checking in, and that the content and experience on the site will serve as a source of conversation. 

Marin County prevention and outreach websiteFriendly fonts and consistent reinforcement of key messaging drive home the high-stakes, communitywide mission of the Marin County, California Prevention and Outreach site.    

 

3. All constituents view themselves as stakeholders.

Whether searching for information about trash pickup schedules, looking into the city’s permitting process, learning about local government initiatives, paying bills, or a myriad of other tasks, expectations are high among all visitors that the site needs to work for them. The optimal UX on a government website offers immediate access to the most frequently sought topics, with robust search capabilities that easily lead to everything else. 

Beyond information gathering and essential task-related factors, the site needs to reflect the county or municipality its very best light, for both citizens and potential tourists. Just as citizens have high expectations that the grounds and interior of their city hall, county courthouse, or state capital will be well tended and impressive, expectations are high for a modern, easy to navigate, beautifully designed website that reinforces civic pride. 

Martin County Florida websiteCentral to Promet's redesign of the Martin County Florida website is a carousel of images on the home page that features the area's spectacular beauty and attractions for both residents and tourists.                                                                     

4. The need to offload a wide range of administrative tasks is paramount.

If there is one, overarching truth among all government entities in the current climate it's this: budgets are tight and everyone needs to find ways to do more with less. Multi-tasking websites are stepping in to fill that void, and their success in doing so hinges on the degree to which taking care of tasks online proves to be a value-added process and free of frustration.

Martin County Fla homepageKey to the success of the Martin County, Florida website, which was recently migrated to Drupal 9: Prominent access to most the frequently searched tasks within an aesthetically pleasing user experience.

 

5.  The content management system needs to enable easy updates along with a high degree of content editing flexibility. 

For a public sector website to serve as a single source of truth, site managers and content editors need to be able to make updates on the fly. Weather alerts or public health emergencies can emerge with no warning, and for a government site to be counted on as a provider of up-to-the-minute accuracy, site managers and content editors need to be able to easily make updates or add new pages. 

For the vast majority of the time, when real time information and updates are not a matter of life and death, simple and streamlined content editing capabilities contribute to a consistent and reliable user experience throughout the site and across all desktop and mobile platforms.

Easy content editing capabilities also set the stage for continuous improvements as citizen feedback and new insights drive citizen-centric enhancements. 

Marin County covid site  Since the onset of the pandemic, daily alerts and updates have been the essential mission of Marin County, California's Health and Human Services Covid-19 site.  

The best state and local leaders are well aware that every positive web interaction represents an opportunity to serve citizens and fuel vast new possibilities for connection and operational efficiencies. Partnering with the public sector to create next-level web experiences that address the full spectrum of citizen needs and expectations is what we do here at Promet Source.

Interested in what we can do for you? Let’s talk!

May 21 2021
May 21

This year, Pantheon set out to evaluate the digital landscape and recognize the world’s best WebOps leaders for creating web experiences that “drive deep, positive change.”

As a leading hosting platform for Drupal sites, and a top SaaS-based website operations platform for developers, designers, and marketers, Pantheon provides a distinct perspective and knowledge of the current scope of transformative solutions that are making a difference. That’s among the reasons why we believe that the Promet Provus platform’s receipt of Pantheon’s 2021 Lighting Award for Innovation represents such a profound achievement.

Pantheon selected Provus:

For creating an innovative user experience enabling content editors to quickly and easily customize, iterate and deploy websites on-brand and at scale for large, multisite networks.

Citing an example of what Provus is enabling Promet Source to achieve in service to our clients, Pantheon further noted that, “The [Promet] team successfully rolled out 53 websites for [a large county website], completing two to three sites every six weeks."

What is Provus?

A Drupal platform that provides marketers and content editors with a library of design components, along with drag-and-drop capabilities to quickly build and update pages as needed, Provus is paving the way for a new normal of no-code, content editor empowerment.


Inspired by the realization that nearly every website consists of various combinations of roughly 15-20 types of features or patterns, Provus organizes a library of high-quality components that can be repurposed for low-code, no-code site building, to create a foundation for:

  • Easier content editing capabilities with drag-and-drop functionality,
  • Greater design flexibility within defined brand standards, and
  • Streamlined development using Drupal’s proven content models.

How Provus Works

Combining the latest drag-and-drop page-building tools in Drupal with a curated library of components, Provus enables content editors to layer designs, add functionality, and rearrange layouts for more engaging and interactive web experiences. Provus is also accelerating development by combining commonly used content types and features with a library of off-the-shelf components.  

Provus on Pantheon, pushes this accelerated development cycle even further by leveraging Pantheon’s WebOps tools, enabling integration in ways that include: 

  • Access to Terminus through the Docksall docker orchestration tool.
  • Use of a single command, “fin pull,” to get the latest database and media assets. 
  • An automatic push of updated versions, to Pantheon from Travis, when pull requests are merged to the “develop” branch.  
  • Configuration import and database updates that happen automatically using Quicksilver.
  • Notification of Slack channels when new code is deployed using Quicksilver.

Under the Hood

Provus leverages Drupal’s Layout Builder module, enhanced by additional contributed modules that include Layout Builder Browser, Layout Builder Library, along with some custom configuration and theming. 

To create high quality, flexible, and accessible components, Provus uses the Emulsify theme, taking advantage of Emulsify’s Storybook integration to facilitate the development and reuse of components across projects. 

Provus’ most flexible and powerful component, the “Link Group,” allows marketers and content editors to choose any content type and apply any of the available cards or component layouts. For example, a content editor can choose events, filter by the event type, sort by title or date, and then place that on the page in a number of available carousels, content lists types, or in rows or columns.

An essential differentiator with Provus is the built-in brand governance that ensures marketers and content editors are working within a framework of brand and style guidelines to maintain a consistent aesthetic, brand-aligned user experience. 

See a demo of Provus in action!

 

Inherently Open Source

Provus is Open Source and is powered within an Open Source ecosystem that includes:

  • Docker
  • Cypress
  • Behat
  • Storybook
  • Drupal
  • MySQL / MariaDB
  • Solr
  • PHP
  • Redis

Signature Promet Source

I could not be more proud of the collective brainpower and the Promet team’s dedication to our clients’ success that has factored into the development of Provus. Provus serves as a powerful representation of our fervent dedication to our clients’ success, as we consistently ask the kinds of questions that begin with “Why Not?” and “What If?” 


It’s great to win awards and the Pantheon 2021 Lightning Award for Innovation is a big one. But truly, our greatest reward is the opportunity to serve as a trusted partner for our clients, while continuing to ignite digital possibilities.


Interested in a demo of Provus in action, or want to talk about new possibilities? Let us know what we can do for you! 
 

About Drupal Sun

Drupal Sun is an Evolving Web project. It allows you to:

  • Do full-text search on all the articles in Drupal Planet (thanks to Apache Solr)
  • Facet based on tags, author, or feed
  • Flip through articles quickly (with j/k or arrow keys) to find what you're interested in
  • View the entire article text inline, or in the context of the site where it was created

See the blog post at Evolving Web

Evolving Web