The Local Government Association of South Australia (LGA SA) is a membership-based organization, established to provide a voice for local government in South Australia, and leadership for the sector. The Association works across three key areas: Leadership and advocacy, capacity building and sustainability and best practice and continuous improvement.
With responsibility for hosting and supporting over 60 clients (councils and local government associations) across South Australia and Tasmania, the Local Government Association of South Australia (LGA SA) went to tender and selected Squiz as their digital partner when their existing CMS began reaching end of life.
As well as needing a new technology platform to power more than 130 websites across the two states, the LGA SA needed:
- An extensible framework catering for a variety of website types, from the large metropolitan to the small outback organizations – and adapt to diverse content and design needs.
- A set of reusable components, forming a shared library for clients to reuse and contribute to.
- A system that positions the LGA SA as a digital agency to clients, enabling them to self-serve, including deploying their own sites.
- Integrations with major databases and payment systems, including My Local Services mobile application data.
- Tools for automated content migration and searchability of state-wide data.
A highly configurable platform was needed, to cater to diverse brand, design, content, and styling requirements. Squiz began a discovery phase with LGA SA and member councils, to gain an understanding of key user needs, and defined the solution requirements. Squiz helped to facilitate client stakeholder engagement, training, and education.
Working in agile sprints, the team delivered over 40 reusable interface components and templates. Major layout options could be toggled on and off and clients could easily implement responsive features, drop components in, set layouts via metadata configuration, and refine via CSS. A common framework formed the backbone of each client site and allowed for future enhancements and features to be easily rolled out to each site.
Squiz deployed a smart and robust Funnelback search implementation matched to clients’ needs. As well as concierge and query completion enabled by default, each client’s news, event, document, and points of interest listings are all powered by Funnelback.
A complex content migration project was also undertaken with the development of a metadata mapping script and in-page content web crawlers based on a dedicated customization of Squiz Transform (Squiz’s automated site migration tool) that achieved a near like-for-like migration.
Client sites were fully migrated, configured, and themed within 20 hours each - offering the LGA SA capability to onboard three to four clients per week.
Squiz helped LGA SA implement common methods and best practices, which combined with process efficiency, helped to reduce costs and project impact on council staff BAU, thus freeing up LGA and council staff to focus on higher-value enhancements.
Crucially, the LGA SA were empowered to provide clients with improved, consistent, high-quality support, and to deliver product and platform training for each client, with support from Squiz.