[This is the second of a series of posts on the latest
data-driven design trends for retirement systems.]
As we alluded to in our
first post of the series, member engagement consistently
trends upward as members get closer to retirement. The reasons
are obvious: members nearing retirement start fantasizing about a
life untethered from phrases like “work-life balance” and begin
paying attention to what it will take to make the jump to their
next phase. Meanwhile, new retirees suddenly become very
interested in monitoring those pension payment dates and finding
out what kind of COLA they can expect.
That’s great. However, as the team responsible for setting
retirees up for success, we know that early member engagement
leads to a better pension experience, healthier long-term
retirement decisions, and (selfishly) fewer customer service
requests over the lifetime of the member.
So, what’s the secret to building member connections earlier in
their careers? Build a quality experience around key life
[This is the first of a series of posts on the
latest data-driven design trends for retirement systems]
For retirement systems, the member
experience is the brand, and while we do occasionally see
revolutionary design and technology shifts (e.g. responsive
design), it’s often the little things that will delight your
users the most.
This week, we’re offering some tidbits we first learned by
working with the New York City Employees’ Retirement System
(NYCERS): Post pension payment dates on your
NYCERS serves over 350,000 members and fields an incredible
number of support calls daily. When we began redesigning their
website, our first order of business was to conduct focus groups
with their customer service team to learn how the website could
proactively reduce employee workload and increase customer
satisfaction. To our delight, the top requests were simpler than
The Maryland State Retirement and Pension System (SRPS) supports
Maryland’s public servants by administering the survivor,
disability, and retirement benefits for 400,000+ members which
include active and former State employees, teachers, State
police, judges, law enforcement officers, correctional officers
and legislators across the state.
Mac founded Digital Deployment in his college dorm room back in
2004. He has led the company in supporting over 500 clients while
never letting a team member’s professional and personal growth
fall to the wayside.
To thank him, we threw him a surprise work-versary party.
Unfortunately, we don’t have a photo of him walking into the room
– he was surprised! – but here are a few of the celebration:
Located just northeast of Los Angeles, the City of Redlands’
charming downtown, inviting atmosphere, rich history, and easy
access to a wide range of outdoor activities make it a natural
destination for residents, businesses, and visitors alike.
Committed to making the city a great place to work, live, and
play, Redlands came to Digital Deployment looking for a modern,
mobile-first website that would streamline the path to essential
services while strengthening the brand and identity of the
Located in the heart of Sacramento’s historic district, the Old
Sacramento Waterfront (The Waterfront) is the perfect spot to
grab a bite, plan a shopping trip, experience gold
rush history, or simply enjoy a waterfront cocktail with
Already a staple for tourists, The Waterfront came to Digital
Deployment looking for an impactful, new website that could
re-introduce The Waterfront to local residents and invite them to
explore the expanding shopping, dining, and growing event
SAN FRANCISCO — Digital Deployment, a full-service website
development firm based in Sacramento, California, has announced a
new strategic partnership with Pantheon, the world’s leading
Drupal website hosting service.
Pantheon currently hosts over 285,000 websites including flagship
sites such as Harvard.edu, the American Civil Liberties Union,
Patagonia, Coach, United Nations, Quicken Loans, IBM and many
more. Pantheon is a distributed, “containerized” Drupal-specific
hosting service that runs across the Google Cloud Platform for
speed and reliability.
At its 40th Anniversary celebration, Disability Rights
California awarded Digital Deployment with its “Access Award”
for its work on website accessibility, particularly for users
with visual or intellectual disabilities.
Founded in 1941, The Sacramento County Employees’ Retirement
System (SCERS) is a defined benefit retirement system dedicated
to ensuring Sacramento’s public servants have access to financial
security and an opportunity to achieve their retirement goals.
Offering a wide range of programs, degrees, certificates and
courses, Sierra College supports a diverse community of over
18,000 students. Students choose Sierra because its academic
offerings, quality, convenience, and committed staff make it the
ideal place to supplement high school education, improve job
skills, earn a certificate, pursue a degree, prepare to transfer
to a four-year school, or simply engage in lifelong learning at
an exceptional value.
The city of Carmel-by-the-Sea is one of the nation’s most
desirable places to visit, work, and live. The unparalleled
natural beauty, preservation of downtown character, clean ocean
air, beautiful beach, and charming neighborhoods contribute to
the quality of life enjoyed by residents and visitors alike. When
we found out we’d been chosen to help shape their new
website we were thrilled, to say the least.
SEIU 1021 is a diverse, effective, member-driven union that
represents nearly 60,000 workers and their families in
healthcare, local government, schools and universities,
nonprofits, and special districts throughout Northern California.
SEIU 1021’s leadership, vision, community, and record of winning
contract and political campaigns empower their organization to
achieve respect, fairness, equity and justice for the working
people it represents.
Digital Deployment provides technology and services to deploy
content management systems. Fourteen years ago we were so focused
on the technology that the actual content was an
afterthought. But this is no longer the case—we have been
providing extensive content services (such as site migration,
content curation, training, and post-launch site reviews)
throughout the entire 5 Phase Process for quite a few years. And
now for some exciting news:
To serve you better, we are restructuring our team to prioritize
the thing you do most: manage your site content. To this
end, Steph Bradley has been
promoted to lead our growing content services team as our
Director of Content Services. She will be overseeing and working
closely with the rest of the content team: Karla, Tim, Ginny …
With both the Digital Deployment and Streamline teams growing, it
finally became time to secure a bit more space for both sides of
the company. Streamline has moved operations to a new space
upstairs, creating room downstairs for the two new Digital
Deployment team members starting later this month (more on that
in our next newsletter!)
In May, Maria Lara joined the team as Streamline’s new Community
Manager, coming from UCSF where she managed their research
program’s marketing and outreach. She will be helping support and
train our clients, and working with Sloane on marketing efforts,
conference planning, and more.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect in
May 2018. GDPR is a set of regulations that gives citizens of the
European Union more control over their personal data privacy and
standardizes business regulations.
All organizations operating within the EU are subject to the
GDPR, as well as any non-EU organizations that offer goods or
services in the EU. Many American companies that have
limited interaction with customers or business in the EU are
struggling to learn what updates—if any—need to be made to their
websites to be GDPR-compliant.
This 30-minute webinar was tailored to anyone who
manages a website and/or is responsible for compliance with
applicable laws. Though we can’t give legal advice, we
walked through the most common things our customers can do
to comply with the GDPR, including how to install a
GDPR-compliant cookie notification.
The California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) is an inspired
organization dedicated to changing lives by making higher
education financially accessible to all Californians.
Established in 1955, CSAC accomplishes this by providing access
to financial aid programs, guidance, and support services to a
diverse range of students, families, schools, counselors, and
financial aid administrators across the state.
Established in 1928, the California Chiropractic Association
(CalChiro) is a nonprofit organization comprised of chiropractic
doctors and allied industries dedicated to furthering
chiropractic care in California.
Specifically, CalChiro helps chiropractors by providing a place
to find community, training, certification, advocacy, valuable
industry resources and the overall support needed to run
successful practices and offer their patients outstanding care.
Disability Rights California (DRC) is the largest disability
rights group in the nation. Established in 1978 to protect and
advocate for Californians with disabilities, DRC directly
assisted nearly 25,000 people last year alone, and in that
time hundreds of thousands more lives were touched through
their litigation, policy work, training, and publications.
Nearing its 60th year, Our Promise: California State
Employees Giving at Work is one of the largest philanthropic
giving campaigns in the state of California. Designed to help
California’s state employees demonstrate their commitment and
dedication to their communities, Our Promise brings
people together to tackle big problems right here at home.
Last summer we hosted an introductory webinar to walk through the
basics of Google Analytics and show you a few of the things we
look at when we evaluate a website. Since then we’ve gotten a lot
of feedback from clients interested in learning more about Google
Analytics tools and advanced features, so this time around
we focused on how you can create custom reports and
dashboards for your organization.
The Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce recently named Digital
Deployment the “Small Business of the Year” at their 123rd Annual
Dinner & Business Awards.
Two Digital Deployment customers also received
awards. Winnie Comstock-Carlson of Comstock’s Magazine was
awarded “Sacramentan of the Year”, and Shannon Deary-Bell of
Nor-Cal Beverage Company (website redesign in
progress) was named “Businesswoman of the Year”.
Stanford Youth Solutions is dedicated to helping families in
crisis situations and empowering them to overcome obstacles.
Specifically, the organization provides behavioral and mental
health services for at-risk youth to help families stay together,
or in some cases, help a youth find a new permanent home.
As of January 18, 2018, websites must meet new federal
guidelines for website accessibility. In this webinar,
we walk through these new requirements, and we show you
how to use free testing tools to verify your level of compliance
with these new standards.
Many of you have asked for our take on the Restoring Internet Freedom notice of proposed rulemaking from the FCC. After reviewing it, we are concerned that the proposed regulation does not sufficiently protect you and your users from internet service providers systematically interfering with internet access, by either blocking or prioritizing certain content or charging for access to particular sites.
It has been a busy year, packed with exciting projects and too
many new site launches to count. That said, the opportunity to
work with California Restaurant Association (CRA) on their new
website truly stood out.
We are fortunate to have the opportunity to work with so many
amazing organizations and associations across the
country. This summer, we had the opportunity to work with
Chief Probation Officers in California (CPOC) on a complete
rebrand and redesign for their organization’s website. Up against
a tight timeline, CPOC was in need of a content management system
that could empower their team, a brand that could solidify their
identity, and a platform that could further their cause–all in
time for their annual conference.
Recently we had the opportunity to work with Ventura County
Employees’ Retirement Association (VCERA) on a brand new
website. Up until this process, their content was hidden
deep within Ventura County’s extensive web presence.
VCERA was ready to break out and establish an online identity of
their own so they could begin delivering the exceptional customer
service online that their more than 15,000 active and retired
members were experiencing in person.
Since 1927, Long Beach City College (LBCC) has been at the heart
of the community providing educational programs with a commitment
to excellence in student learning in a culturally diverse and
Website development projects can be fraught with risk.
Organizations often wonder:
How can we be sure we’re choosing the right technology for
Have we thought of everything so we don’t miss deadlines or
pay for change orders?
How can we avoid getting stuck with a vendor that we can’t
trust to deliver?
How can we make an apples-to-apples comparison of all these
How can we ensure our new website is one we can be proud of?
This document aims to help you ask the right questions and
mitigate risks when evaluating a website vendor. While there are
many items to compare, the 22 questions listed here are those
most likely to affect your overall project process and outcome
while also ensuring that your website project launches on time
and within your budget.
I was privileged to meet FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to discuss
bridging the digital divide and net neutrality. Despite
differences in policy, we had a productive dialog. He has a bold
plan to expand opportunity and access, and I look forward to
holding him accountable, particularly to the needs of smaller
businesses like ours.
Recently, we had the opportunity to work with the New York City
Employees Retirement System (NYCERS) on their new
website. Serving more than 350,000 active members and
retirees in New York City, NYCERS is the largest municipal public
employee retirement system in the United States.
Through stakeholder surveys, on-site focus groups, and discovery
conversations with the call center, we carefully sought out
opportunities that would save the NYCERS team valuable time while
better serving members.
We recently decided to lean into the heat and go kayaking on Lake
Natoma. We packed up an hour early on a Thursday, drove up to
Folsom, and spent a lovely and relaxing evening kayaking and
paddleboarding around the lake and under bridges. We’re very
lucky that our team likes spending time together, even outside
Google Analytics is a powerful tool, but the sheer volume of options it provides can be a little intimidating for new users. This webinar provides a clear overview of how Google Analytics can help you learn more about how visitors use your site.
Some of our clients are thought leaders, and when searching for
topics they cover, you can often find them on the first
page of search engine results. This allows those
clients to define what the public understands about a
Stock photos have developed a reputation of looking contrived and
cheesy, and/or being terribly expensive. Fortunately, if you’re
looking to snazz up some your content with photography but don’t
have a budget for professional photos, you’re in luck. We have
three sites that we recommend you check out: unsplash.com, pixabay.com, and pexels.com.
Back in the day of Microsoft publisher, clip art was all the
rage. Fortunately, those days have passed and we have some much
better tools to help get our ideas across.
Today, we’d like to introduce you to Unsplash.com. Unsplash is a gorgeous
collection of royalty-free photography that uses a creative
commons zero license to provide great, free images for websites
like yours. “Blogs, art, book covers, tshirts, and more — paid or
unpaid — they’re all allowed under the license.”
In May Mac Clemmens joined Steve McMahon, a broadband
expert and longtime board member of the Davis Community Network,
to talk about two internet subjects in the news – net
neutrality, the rules of which the Federal Communications
began to repeal, and the status of the civic effort to build
a municipal fiber-optic network in Davis. The conversation was
held at KDRT (95.7) in Davis, and the recording is available
This week we had the opportunity to attend the AMA conference for
higher education in Orlando, Florida. As the premier conference
for higher education marketing in the country, it was the perfect
chance to meet with our clients and partners who are distributed
across the country, as well as make new contacts and
tune into emerging industry trends.
The Yolo County Children’s Alliance (YCCA) is an amazing
organization dedicated to improving the lives of children, youth,
and families in our communities. They do this by providing a
variety of programs that lead, coordinate, connect, support,
educate and advocate to help parents reach their goals.
With a newly launched website, they truly have a platform to take
their efforts to the level.
The Monterey airport is the gateway to one of the most
sought-after vacation destinations in California. Focused on
convenience and customer service, the Monterey airport serves a
wide variety of travelers including tourists, military
personnel, business people, private aviators and members of the
With their gorgeous new website, the Monterey airport makes
existing travelers lives easier, entices new travelers to choose
to use their services, draws in new airlines/routes and enhances
the overall bond with the community.
What we love about Monterey Airport’s redesign
The new website perfectly reflects their commitment to
customer service - From parking lot to terminal, we
worked together to ease every bit of the experience for the
From day one, Monterey was committed to pushing the
envelope with design - Ambient video, social media
integration, flight status integration, and modern slide out
navigation provide the visitor with a modern, cutting-edge
experience that fits seamlessly with their new brand.
Striking imagery - The Monterey airport
team immediately recognized the power imagery has to affect a
visitor’s experience and perception of their brand. With this in
mind, the airport engaged the community and found a wealth of
photography and video footage that adds to the user experience at
WEAVE redesigned their website to be friendlier to users on
mobile devices as well as users with disabilities, driving
donations and general engagement.
They received over 15,000 unique visitors (76% new), held top
rank in Google for over 500 strategic keywords, which drive over
75% of the site’s traffic. #1 for “abuse help sacramento” and
“domestic violence sacramento.”
Blind user commented, “I can finally use the site” thanks to the
rigorous standards-compliance that makes the site accessible by
following Section 508 guidelines.
A redesign helped kids and parents get excited about visiting the
Ocean Institute — while providing event planners information on
facility rental, and donors a compelling reason to support their
The Institute for Local Government needed to organize over 7,000
frequently accessed case studies, best practices, and policy
Using a taxonomy structure, the institute is now able to publish
content both by type, topic, and interest area and help users
find related content. We also installed Apache Solr to help them
enhance search to look inside PDFs, correct spelling mistakes,
Western State Colorado University did not have the timeline
to redesign their campus website but wanted to boost admissions
through a digital campaign.
Using market research, strategy, and creative from a higher ed
consultant they had worked with, we created a flexible admissions
landing page that Western can maintain internally and change
elements to maximize different digital campaigns.
The Osher Collaborative for Integrative Medicine, based at
the University of California, San Francisco, comprises an
international group of six academic Centers including UCSF,
Harvard, Karolinska, Northwestern, Vanderbilt, and University of
Miami funded by The Bernard Osher Foundation to study, teach, and
practice integrative medicine.
We recently enhanced the
student experience with the entire redesign of Long
Beach City College’s website (for all 36,000 students, faculty
and staff) by successfully bringing over 200 departments and
schools into a single site with a universal look and feel.
One of the things that makes Digital Deployment one of
Sacramento’s Best Places to Work is our focus on culture and team
connectedness. We support this with weekly teamwide
check-ins, bi-weekly team lunches, and monthly connectedness
activities. Each month a different team member is
responsible for planning a non-work related activity where we can
hang out and be merry.
We created a new website for the City of Rocklin, one of the
fastest growing cities in California, that communicated the
emerging brand and lifestyle of the city while providing citizens
with self-service functions such as rental forms, reservations,
and contact information.
Numerous departments can maintain their own section of the
website using advanced workflow and email approvals.
If you don’t have the budget to hire a consulting firm to help
determine priorities when making decisions about technology
adoption, or you’d just like to understand the process better so
that you can choose a good partner/vendor, this free webinar is
The folks from Digital Deployment and Streamline lay out a
discovery process that includes identifying “audiences” (or
stakeholders), getting to the “why” of what you’re hoping to
accomplish, and methods to clearly identify what is required for
a successful adoption of any new system you’re considering.
The Sacramento SPCA is an open admission animal shelter, which
means they accept animals that are surrendered to us regardless
of health, age, breed or behavior. Open admission shelters play
an essential role in providing care to the thousands of animals
that would otherwise have no safe refuge.
Do you ever wonder what we’re up to behind the scenes? Do you
wonder if your ideas for improvements are being implemented? In
case you missed them in the monthly update emails, we’ve compiled
a list of what you—our clients—told us were some of the most
useful features and updates added to your site last year.
Last month, I was extremely honored that Digital Deployment was
selected as a Small Business Development Center success story and
recognized by two members of Congress: Rep. Doris Matsui and Rep.
This was all made possible thanks to you—our clients, who have
been with us the entire way. You’ve allowed us to thrive in our
hometown, remain rooted in our values, and yet reach across the
country and rise to the challenge of building great sites for
outstanding organizations. Thank you!
Digital Deployment CEO Mac Clemmens and 3Fold Communication’s
Gordon Fowler appeared on Studio Sacramento with host Scott
Syphax to discuss how the Millennial generation approaches
the rules of career and success as entrepreneurs.