Systems Alliance, Inc. (SAI), a digital and IT consulting firm helping clients build, assess and optimize online properties, today announced the launch of a redesigned Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) website. APLU’s membership includes 238 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems, and affiliated organizations, across the US, Mexico and Canada. The association is a research, policy, and advocacy organization dedicated to increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement.
APLU (http://www.aplu.org) selected SAI to re-imagine and optimize the site visitor experience for a broad and diverse group of APLU constituents. SAI’s Digital practice went to work to architect a site that would align with their vision and address limitations of their current website. After extensive analysis, which included surveys with key stakeholders, web traffic analysis and card sort activities, the SAI team recommended features and enhancements that would provide audiences an engaging and interactive user experience.
The information architecture is now more intuitive allowing association members and visitors to find key information quickly and easily. The new design, which leverages mobile-optimized responsive design techniques, streamlines content, highlights member achievements, showcases their policy and advocacy work, and provides a feature-rich home for their many councils and commissions. Vibrant images from member institutions bring the site to life, creating an inviting atmosphere for audiences to learn more.
Key objectives of the new design are to:
- Increase value to members, enhancing awareness and engagement
- Create a dynamic user experience for stakeholders
- Centralize all information with one site that appeals to all audiences
“The new site provides us with a much more effective way to communicate our work and to interact with our members, policymakers, journalists, and the general public,” noted Jeff Lieberson, Vice President of Public Affairs at APLU.
Built in SAI’s flagship web content management system, SiteExecutive, the new site design pushes the boundaries of structured content and supports a number of dynamic features:
- Publication library – Allows content administrators to feature resources and relate them to projects, initiatives and offices. SAI architected a method for site administrators to copy the library for use in individual commissions and councils.
- Member Spotlights – Allows content administrators to feature recent achievements at member institutions.
- Job postings – Users can submit, filter and apply to jobs at member institutions.
- Custom Google map – Site visitors can filter by type of institution and location.
- Calendars – SAI created a comprehensive calendar system that allows users to tag events with associated councils, commissions and event type.
“From our very first meeting to discuss strategy through the day we launched the new site, the SAI team was absolutely wonderful to work with and completely responsive to our needs,” expressed Lieberson. “They are a creative and skilled group and our new website is reflective of their significant talents. We’ve already received rave reviews from our membership and others about the look of the new site and its functionality.”