Otsego County is seeking to redesign its website and brand, to make it more attractive, easier to use and easier to maintain.
The County desires a thoughtful, aesthetic and userfriendly design that serves to welcome users to Otsego County and its offerings.
Otsego County is soliciting proposals for the complete redesign of its website. Ideally, the new website design will present a welcoming experience for users and will be intuitive to navigate both on a computer screen and on a mobile platform. The new website design shall serve to entice users to seek out County amenities in addition to the service(s) they were originally seeking. The content and structure of the website must be such that content updates can be performed by non-IT staff.
The primary goal of the County is to provide a website that presents a welcoming platform to Otsego County and its offerings. To accomplish this, the website must be personalized to showcase the strengths specific to Otsego County and include action images of positive engagement with County services and facilities. As an example, Otsego County boasts a stellar parks and recreation system which provides an endless backdrop of beautiful natural features and recreational offerings for all ages, which should be prominently illustrated on the website. Otsego County proudly offers exemplary services to the community, and its activities and facilities should be featured on the website. Otsego County enjoys a rich outdoor, natural beauty which should be incorporated as a website theme throughout.
To build upon its initial aesthetic impact, the Otsego County website should serve to ensure its visitors are connected to the County Department that can best address their needs. Most visitors know exactly the information they are seeking when they visit www.otsegocountymi.gov and a search function should be prominent on the home page.
The ideal website will provide for transparency of the documentation involved with County functionality and serve to archive information that is continuously accessed.
The desired website will successfully link the County to its essential partners including: the city, village, townships, component units, joint ventures, etc., to demonstrate the County’s synergism with the surrounding community.
Additionally, the website shall serve to allow 24-hour access to County information, forms, and the ability to conduct business online.
Otsego County’s current website is located at www.otsegocountymi.gov and presents a wealth of information regarding County services, functions, facilities and offerings, but is not user friendly and eyecatching enough to meet our growing needs. The current website design displays information primarily in list form and does not serve to engage its users. A volume of information is launched at the user on the leading page and likely serves to overwhelm most visitors. A search function handily exists on the home page, but is less prominent than is desired. When visitors search for a service or department they arrive at a militant department listing which could be better presented and made to be more attractive. The new website pages should serve to entice the user to continue traversing the site. When searching for directions to County facilities, visitors are presented with another list format that is busy and confusing. The current website does not provide links to our most prominent community partners and only links to community services through a list format. We would like the County website to offer an employee login for access to employee specific information.
The County’s current website is segmented, with information repeated on several pages. The County desires a streamlined approach. For example, currently there are several different places on the website for a member of the public to contact the appropriate County employee for a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. If there is turnover in that employee position, you must go to several different pages on the website to update the contact information, making updating cumbersome and easy to miss some places.
While the County maintains an affinity for its current logo which appropriately exemplifies its culture, a full brand redesign of its web presence is desired.
Scope of Services
Proposals for redesign of the County website should address the following objectives, which are not necessarily all-inclusive:
1. The new website shall maintain the www.otsegocountymi.gov address.
2. The new website design shall be developed as an original concept design which conveys the culture of Otsego County and is consistent with the County’s existing brand.
3. The new website shall be consistently easy to navigate throughout, shall be accessible from a wide range of devices, and be easily viewable from a desktop PC, tablet, smart phone, or mobile device of any manufacturer or operating system.
4. The website must be fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and specifically as it relates to governmental websites.
5. The website design shall include a fully searchable calendar of events that can be easily maintained by limited IT staff and easily updated by non-IT staff.
6. The website design shall demonstrate the County’s commitment to transparency and service delivery by increasing the information and services available online.
7. The new website shall include a feature which allows users to request services, or submit fillable online forms to the appropriate County Department.
8. The new website shall include robust online payment options with dropdown boxes to select payment choices (i.e.; taxes, dog licenses, birth certificates) and adhere to acceptable security practices (SSL, HTTPS, etc.)
9. The new website shall include the successful migration of pertinent existing content from the current website into the new design.
10. The new website shall include a main Department page for each County Department that is specific to its unique services, news, and current and archived information, which includes communication with each Department Head, Elected Official, and/or appointed staff. However, the new website
shall maintain consistency in overall page design throughout, as approved by the County Administrator.
11. The new website shall incorporate the County’s Geographic Information System (GIS) maps and/or data, or Google Maps, to display aerial and street level views of County facilities as available.
12. The new website shall incorporate an archival function for articles at a predefined time after publishing to the website, as well as the ability to schedule a future posting date.
13. The new website shall offer a fully functional job posting and employment application feature.
14. The new website shall incorporate the ability to embed audio and video throughout.
15. The new website shall incorporate website analytics to allow for visitor tracking throughout the website.
16. The new website shall provide for search engine optimization to maintain the highest possible ranking for Otsego County pages across all major search providers.
17. The content management system of the new website shall be easily managed and maintained by limited IT staff and periodic content updates shall be easily performed by non-IT staff through support of both administrator and content creator roles.
18. The content management system of the new website shall have a spell check feature and the ability to preview content prior to publishing.
19. The new website shall have the ability to perform limited content management system changes from a mobile device, mainly for emergency and closure notifications.
20. The new website shall provide for the ability of staff to view a log of changes made to the website, the user who performed the change, and when the change was made
21. The new website shall provide for the ability of staff to create new pages that are consistent with the website layout and navigation, along with the ability to delete or disable existing pages.
22. The proposal shall include the procedure to be used for testing and validation of the new website prior to its live launch.
23. The proposal shall describe how your firm will provide for initial training of County staff to ensure full administration and maintenance of all aspects of the website.
24. The proposal shall include a description of the training materials that will be provided to the County for use by end user IT staff and any appointed content users.
25. The proposal shall include an employee login for access to employee specific information.
For full details, see attached PDF:
* Budgets are estimated based on project scope and similar projects. Determining a clear budget will require due diligence, analysis, scoping and estimating.
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