20 sites, one digital voice

20 sites, one digital voice

province of Antwerp
from 2006 onwards
screenshots Provant

How do you get the general public to accept your mission, when much of what you do and accomplish happens behind the screens? We helped the province of Antwerp to develop a consistent digital presence through a component-based online platform. Today, 20 branded sites and an umbrella portal clearly and efficiently convey what the the province of Antwerp offers and stands for. This will enable a considerable cut-back on communication spending.

In 2010, the province of Antwerp faced a real communication challenge. A governmental body wedged between the local and federal administration, they had a difficulty conveying their mission to the general public and stakeholders. People simply didn’t understand the need for this provincial  administration.

And that’s no wonder. Much of their public services happens behind the scenes, through related organisations and administrative, political or infrastructural support. The accomplishments of their 11 provincial departments therefore remained invisible to the public eye – despite their dispersed and expensive communication efforts.

screenshot province of antwerp website

Rigid, unmanageable and non-responsive

As for their online communication, it was getting lost in the woods, or rather: in an overly complex, and non-responsive site. The rigid tree structure didn’t facilitate an easy content management, nor did it reflect the dynamic evolutions within the Province’s ranks.

So, the province of Antwerp has turned to us as their digital agency and partner since 2006 .

Determining strategic digital vision

Our first priority lay in a strategic exercise. Sparring closely with the the province of Antwerp team, we translated crucial elements from their mission statement into an online vision. Ultimately, their digital presence was to convey how they provide tailor-made answers to supra local communal challenges.

Needs analysis drives online objectives

Following a needs analysis and target group mapping, we discerned four main online communication domains, each to be served with a branded user experience:  leisure, learning, mission & policies and support of civil servants and municipalities. In close dialogue with the the province of Antwerp we determined which departmental services and organisations would fall under the umbrella site and which were to have their own branded presence. This resulted in 20 discernible online sub brands. The umbrella site provincieantwerpen.be caters to its large and diversified audience.

Agile components-based development

In cooperation with our technical partner Amplexor, we built the sites’ architecture on a components-based platform. This platform contains the functional elements to assemble each of the 20 websites. By creating common components we were able to drastically reduce development time whilst simplifying content management and maintenance for the coming years.

Result: cost-effective approach

Our work resulted in a collection of over 20 responsive sites, each with their own look and feel, but all belonging to the province’s new and diverse digital presence. The component-based architectural set-up allows for swift and consistent decentralized content and communication management, well within the brand and house style requirements of the province of Antwerp.

Improving UX quality

As their digital partner we continue to provide user experience consultancy and monitor and improve the digital presence of the province of Antwerp. Optimising decentralized communication, organising user testing and defining KPI’s we help their many departmental teams to ensure an optimized user-friendliness, swifter content management and higher content quality.

About the province of Antwerp

The province of Antwerp provincial government, offers citizens, municipalities and social servants tailor-made services and support. The provincial mission is based around leisure, learning and local support. They manage their own provincial museums, recreational centres, nature reserves, schools and multidisciplinary training centres. They cooperate with other official organizations, the local economy and social partners as well as enhance the life of citizens through infrastructural activities, such as roadworks.