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Learn how using an integrated website can deliver huge improvements in online services for residents.

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About Alpine Shire Council

Using an integrated website to deliver huge improvements in online services to residents

The Alpine Shire Council (Alpine) is a small progressive council in north eastern Victoria. At the start of 2019, the Alpine Shire Council engaged Symphony3 to help them enhance their digital service delivery to their community. Symphony3 worked closely with Alpine Shire staff to drive digital transformation and to provide a platform that enables Alpine to continuously grow and improve its service delivery. 

Alpine Shire Council Website All Devices Responsive Mockup

Image: Example of the Alpine websites new responsive homepage design.

Challenge 

Alpine is driven by a desire for innovation and to provide the best possible services for residents.

Alpine recognised that their old website was limiting their ability to provide the best possible services for their residents. They wanted a website that provided clarity for residents and staff, whilst showing the council and region in its best light.

  • Manual processes were slowing the council down. For example, if a resident needed to complete a form, they would have to download the form, print it off, manually fill it out, and then mail it to the council for manual processing by council staff. 
  • Disconnected digital technologies meant that their services were unable to display the most relevant information for residents, and that council staff had the confusing challenge of trying to manage disconnected services with disconnected technologies. 
  • The Alpine website was limiting their ability to provide modern services that met the expectations of modern residents.
  • Proprietary software providers make enterprise-grade cost-prohibitive for smaller councils such as Alpine.

 

Solution 

A cutting edge user interface

  • Symphony3 worked closely with the Alpine shire staff to design an Enterprise Grade corporate website that reflected the personality of the organisation and the region. A website geared towards delivering better services to the community while driving internal efficiencies. 
  • A top tasks driven interface makes it simple and easy to find the most used council services.

Alpine Dashboard Screenshots

Image: Examples from the Alpine Projects and Services Dashboard. In order: Traffic Lights, Maps, Graphing.

A key to unlock staff potential

  • Staff potential and creativity could be unlocked as council employees provided ideas for using digital tools to transform their service delivery. For example, telling the public directly on the homepage what council facilities are open or closed. 
  • Alpine staff joined the Symphony3 platform community an eco-system where they can share and use ideas, code and forms with other Symphony3 clients.

Alpine Smart Form

Image: Example of Alpine Smart Online Form

Alpine Facility

Image: Example of Alpine Facilities

Integration - Smart glue 

  • Integration middleware is embedded in the platform and sitting under the website. This will allow Alpine to easily integrate its digital interfaces (website, capital works dashboard) with internal systems.
  • Integration with GIS means that council data can automatically be displayed on the website.
  • Integration with Xero accounts provides real-time financial data on the capital works dashboard to key stakeholders. 

 

Guidance from experienced local government digital advisers 

  • Symphony3’s knowledge of Local Government ensures that the new platform is implemented to suit the specific needs of local governments.

 

Alpine Shire Council Website Phone Mockup

 
Image: Mobile examples from the Alpine website. From left to right: News, Tasks driven home-page, Events.

 

Outcomes

For the residents

  • A simple, easy to use and visually appealing website that makes it easier to access council services and information.
  • A top tasks driven interface makes it simple and easy for residents to find the most used council services.
  • A clean design aesthetic that showcases the beauty of the region while also making it easier for residents to do what they need to.
  • Personalised logins allow users to retrieve historical information such as events and forms submitted, save favourite pages for later, manage newsletter subscriptions from one place, and update their details users to find information via the search function.
  • Simplified user experience for residents. Payments, event registrations, and most other council engagements can now be conducted online for the convenience of residents and council staff.
  • Increased resident engagement as residents can now vote on council proposals through their personal account on the Alpine website.

Alpine Search  

Image: Example of Alpine Search Tool

Alpine Account

Image: Example of Alpine User Account Page

The new Alpine website is simple for residents to use. Many government websites are notoriously convoluted and frustrating for residents. At Symphony3 we believe that this does not need to be the case. At the heart of everything that we do, is the idea of simple connected customer experiences.  

For the council

Cut costs
  • An enterprise-grade corporate website that is delivered quickly and cost-effectively, within time and on budget.
  • An Open source foundation greatly reducing the total cost of ownership.
  • A quick deployment via Symphony3's shared platform reduces the time and cost of implementation.
Connected services
  • Platform integration connecting previously disconnected council systems, services and information on an ongoing basis.
  • Open standards ensuring ongoing integration with third-party systems.
  • The ability for council staff to use these now integrated systems to present information. For example, using GIS data to overlay council information on Google maps. 
Simplified processes
  • Council employees can now spend less time doing paperwork, and more time striving to improve council services. 

 

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Key Takeaways

  • Enterprise-Grade corporate website delivered quickly and cost-effectively, within time and on budget.
  • Top tasks driven interface makes it simple and easy to find the most used council services.
  • A clean design aesthetic and easy to use interface that showcases the beauty of the region.
  • Personalised logins providing users with personalised council information.
  • Platform integration allows for easy connection of council systems on an ongoing basis.
  • Improved efficiency with streamlined processes. 
  • Cut costs with Symphony3's open-source local government platform. 
  • Drive resident engagement with improved communication between the council and residents. 
  • Council employees can now spend less time doing paperwork, and more time striving to improve council services. 

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