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The Digital Experience Platform blog covers the latest in innovative technologies to help you transform your business.

  • Cloud |
    October 13, 2016

Public Facing Citizen Website

Kellsey Ruppel
Principal Product Marketing Director

Authored by: Mitchell Palski, Oracle Fusion Middleware Specialist

‘Interactivity’ is the name of the game when it comes to your government’s web presence. Guiding citizens in your town, village, or city, to the correct information or tools can be a difficult task. Web experiences have to cater to a VERY wide range of end-users, ranging from the iPhone illiterates to the estranged Androidians. My grandmother bookmarks websites on her home screen and thinks they are all apps. Meanwhile, my neighbor is writing his own mobile app that notifies gamers when new video games are about to be released. 

Then there’s me (a typical millennial) – the self-proclaimed “UI guy” who grew up using Hotmail and AIM. I remember dial-up, but only like a bad dream. I was always the lead Java developer in my Undergraduate group projects, but I’ve never built a mobile app from scratch. I have to Google “Unix commands” almost every time I need to actually use them, but I’ve also never paid a utility bill with an actual check. The point is, I need my city website to work for me, and my grandmother, and my nerdy neighbor.

On the other side of the screen, there’s another persona – a “technical, but not a developer” type who wants to understand their users, who needs a portfolio-bulking project, and who works for my local government IT department. He/she knows graphic design and the English language better than Enterprise Architecture and C#. Now that we know who we’re dealing with, let’s make a deal.

We’re going to build a website that is useful, usable, desirable, findable, accessible, and credible (see https://www.usability.gov). Thousands of people who all live in the same geographic region are all going to log into this website to look up information, fill out forms, pay taxes/fees, reserve public parks, and maybe even market their businesses. To sum it up, we need a solution that is going to:
  1. Improve awareness of City services
  2. Encourage users to interact with Citizen services
  3. Speed-up the process by which those Citizens are engaged
The task can seem daunting, but luckily for you (I assume you’re faced with this task, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this) it’s 2016 and plenty of people in the world have already started doing the same thing and come up with some pretty damn good best practices for getting it done, Oracle being one of them.
If you aren’t familiar with the term “Platform as a Service” (Paas) or why it matters, check out this article by Carol Hildebrand. If you don’t have the time, here is a summary:
  • Oracle can host your development tools in the Cloud for you.
  • You won’t have to pay for the hardware, the installation, or the maintenance of those tools.
  • You’ll be able to quickly and easily scale your environment.
  • You can focus on the project, rather than the infrastructure.


In Oracle’s portfolio of Cloud products, we’ve lifted our Enterprise grade web solutions into the Cloud so that you can take advantage of tools that help with:

  1. Drag-and-drop, simple, mobile-friendly, 508-compliant web design
  2. Web Content Management and Publishing
  3. Secure customer support – Chat and Knowledge base
Oracle’s Digital Experience Platform allows you to:
  • Quickly and easily define, manage, and update your site navigation
  • Build and organize web pages using drag-and-drop, WYSIWYG user interfaces
  • Integrate seamlessly with eCommerce and customer relationship management (CRM) tools

Oracle RightNow Chat Cloud Service, agents can always guide your customers to the best answers and outcomes. Sessions can be initiated by a customer or proactively based on company-defined rules and triggers. Resolve issues with higher productivity, increase conversion rates and boost satisfaction.

The end result of combining Oracle RightNow Chat Cloud Service with the DX Platform is a complete customer journey. Your solution will not only proactively engage citizens with a complete self-service website, but also allow your staff to quickly interact with citizens directly from the online service that they need assistance with. Intuitive design mixed with an online chat service will streamline the user experience, improve user satisfaction, and reduce operational costs of active call-centers.

Want to learn more about Oracle’s DX platform? Check out these blog posts:
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