Leading-Edge Accessibility, Customer Experience and Content Editing Capabilities on Drupal 8
With its continued growth and success as a mutual savings bank in Massachusetts, Cambridge Savings Bank (CSB) became aware of a pressing need: to improve the customer experience for a growing customer base while improving the editability of the site for the bank’s marketing team and various business lines. In addition, the bank felt strongly that their new customer experience should be accessible to all, including individuals with disabilities.
A primary motivation for CSB was to increase the flexibility of their website’s content management system (CMS). CSB’s marketing team and business lines needed to be able to make changes rapidly and keep the site up to date around new products or services. The solution had to be flexible, adaptable, and allow changes to be made easily by marketing without impacting the accessibility of the site.
On the topic of accessibility, designing and developing inclusive websites has become an increasing focus for leading businesses in all industries. CSB was committed to show its leadership by investing in improving the accessibility of their websites for their community.
ADK and CSB kicked off the effort with a strategic discovery involving 15+ internal teams within the bank. Relative to the need for increased site flexibility, we uncovered additional pain points and design opportunities among the teams. We used that information to develop a project plan and strategy for improving the website’s content editing workflows.
Simultaneously, our designers began auditing the previous website for accessibility. Following the Website Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), we developed a color palette and font system, as well as a new user interface (UI) kit that meets WCAG standards for color contrast and legibility. This long-term view was critical – for each set of components we developed to make the site more accessible, we made sure to implement barriers to prevent content editors from potentially creating pages or sections of pages in ways that would render them non-accessible going forward.
To enhance the flexibility of the site’s CMS, we leveraged Drupal 8 and a page builder framework, which offer the ability to create infinite permutations of pages (instead of traditional templates) while maintaining accessibility.
As a result, the CSB marketing team is now empowered to better reach new audiences and to enhance the experience of all website visitors regardless of their ability.
The bank now has a flexible, modern, customer-first website platform to support their continued growth. The bank’s website is now optimized to WCAG 2.0 AA standards (accessible to almost all users). Along the way, we had the honor of working with the Carroll Center for the Blind, a leading nonprofit that audits websites using screen readers to offer feedback on visual accessibility and functionality. ADK’s accessibility team worked closely with the Carroll Center and led the charge in implementing feedback from the Carroll Center to go above and beyond standard practice for accessibility.
Beyond its accessibility and flexibility, the new site also performs much faster. Pages fully load much faster than typical industry standards, making for a better user experience all around and enhancing the bank’s search engine potential. The SEO successes didn’t stop there, as ADK’s SEO team also worked with CSB to tune the site’s code and content to maximize performance.
In short, the new CSB website elevates the bank’s digital customer experience and empowers marketing to reach more audiences.
As a leader in accessible digital experience design and development services with deep financial services experience, ADK was a strong fit for CSB’s needs. With the size and scope of this project, it was critical that the ADK team first and foremost provided effective project management. ADK’s agile project management process was integral in managing the many stakeholders and requirements and driving through to a successful launch.
In addition, ADK’s experienced Drupal 8 team built a high-performance digital experience and integrated it with a number of third-party technologies for online banking, financial tools and calculators, learning tools, and more.
Lastly, leaning on more than a decade of DevOps experience, ADK’s systems administors also assisted the bank’s IT team in architecting and setting up a high-performance, high-security hosting environment for the bank.
In the end, successful digital projects are all about putting together skilled teams and working together in close collaborations from start to finish. Working together, we were able to execute to the high standards that have made ADK and CSB into market leaders in greater Boston.