Digital Agency for Nonprofits and Government

Forum One is a full-service digital agency that works with nonprofits, foundations and government agencies to create the stunning designs, smart messaging, and custom-built technology tools they need to realize their goals and extend their influence in the areas they care about most.

We speciliaze in branding, web development, user experience, digital strategy, data visualization, design, CRM integration, campaigns and web analytics.

Our offices are located in Alexandria (VA), Washington (DC), and Seattle (WA).

 
$5,000+
 
$150 - $199 / hr
 
50 - 249
 Founded
1997
Show all +
Alexandria, VA
headquarters
  • 2200 Mount Vernon Avenue
    Alexandria, VA 22301
    United States
other locations
  • 1110 Vermont Avenue
    Washington, DC 20005
    United States
  • 2101 4th Ave, Suite 2000
    Seattle, WA 98121
    United States

Portfolio

Key clients: 

Smithsonian Institution (National Museum of African American History & Culture, National Museum of Natural History and the National Zoo), Global Impact, Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, McArthur Foundation, MATHCOUNTS Foundation, Save the Children, Oxfam America, She Should Run, American Red Cross, Peace Corps, USAID, USDA, EPA, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data.

Reviews

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Drupal 7 Web Design & Web Development for National Museum

“They brought a lot of experience from different clients across a variety of sectors, and we’ve benefited from that.”

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
4.0
Cost: 
3.0
Willing to refer: 
4.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Dec.2015 - July 2016
Project summary: 

In order to prepare a large museum for its opening, Forum One built a Drupal 7 site within institutional infrastructure, with strong SEO and consistent UX across a variety of devices.

The Reviewer
 
1,001 - 5,000 Employees
 
Washington, District of Columbia
Chief Digital Officer, Musuem
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

After a very successful first year, analytics of audience metrics help set future goals. Forum One kept the project on schedule and within budget, and were willing to collaborate and follow existing methodology. Though the site has launched, they will continue to support new initiatives.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the chief digital officer at a government-administered museum, responsible for our digital product development, strategy, and operations.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Forum One?

We had a very basic site, but it acted as a placeholder before we opened our doors, and was only a few pages deep. We needed in-depth website design and development support to flesh it out.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

They built a site in Drupal 7. We wanted to make the more than 10,000 objects in our collection available to as wide and diverse a public as possible on our online platform. We present a variety of museum stories from our curatorial staff, as well as overviews of permanent exhibits, events, and public programming. We run a timed pass service for individuals, and a collection search feature to help visitors get the most out of their experience. We also wanted to provide a unique experience for our online audience. People who may not be able to visit our museum can still benefit from the rich history and educational materials available online.

Our stakeholders and groups within the museum worked closely with our education, curatorial, and public affairs teams to develop high-level strategic goals and content areas. We then had a design phase where Forum One presented several versions of the website that we reviewed. They worked with our staff in the development phase to build the site within our overarching infrastructure.

The approach from the beginning was to design a website that could responsively function across a range of devices. Forum One supplied a lot of design work to ensure that the information would be as organized and well-presented in the mobile versions of the site.

They looked at the overall site design and information architecture to make sure our content was presented throughout the entire site with strong SEO in mind. We rank high in searches, and they’ve engineered our mobile results to include important information about passes, FAQ, visiting us, etc. They also helped implement our analytics to make sure the whole website was tagged appropriately to give us rich data about our online visitors.

What is the team composition?

The size of the team goes up and down, depending on the need. We had a core team of project manager, backend lead, frontend lead, and a user experience designer. There were other members assisting, but that was our core group.

How did you come to work with Forum One?

We did a lot of market research, and put out an RFP. We wanted a local company who we could collaborate with on a high level. We needed someone with a broad range of experience in web design and information architecture. This was more than a museum website, but a platform for our content, and we wanted a team that could bring that to different audiences. We had to go through federal procurement, and the staff and stakeholders agreed that Forum One presented the best value for the work.

What is the status of this engagement?

They started on the project late in 2015, and the website launched in July 2016. They now act as a contractor to operate and maintain the site, as well as develop additional features to support new programming, activities, and initiatives for online audiences.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We’ve had a successful first year. We established a lot of baselines in terms of audience metrics and setting goals for ourselves for the coming year. Our audience responds positively in surveys, and our stakeholders are pleased with the different features we’re able to offer. Searches for our calendar and ticketing features are strong, and the public has an easy time with the overall UI. We were also recognized with a Webby Award in 2017.

It’s impossible to compare our new site with the very small set of pages we had before. It was like launching a new website with an entirely new content strategy to drive our audience to us. We’re happy with the early results, and will continue to make improvements.

How did Forum One perform from a project management standpoint?

They performed well, and kept us on schedule and within budget. They were willing to collaborate and follow our agile methodology within an iterative approach to design and development. We had members of our team who acted as product owners, and we had regular conversations, demos, and feedback sessions with the entire team. Early on, we had regular, daily check-ins, with bi-monthly demos. As we moved further into the project, we communicated several times a week, or less, as needed.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They’re willing and open to collaboration. They brought a lot of experience from different clients across a variety of sectors, and we’ve benefited from that. Beyond just looking like any museum website, we’ve looked at a broad range of media and content areas to improve our online presence.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Make sure you have a strong vision, and that you communicate it. They work better when there is open collaboration and communication. Don’t rely on a static statement of work from the beginning of the project. Have a strong product owner or lead who can communicate your goals and be available to represent your needs.

4.0
Overall Score They’re a very talented group, and open to collaboration. We will continue our relationship with them and continue to improve upon it.
  • 4.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    We’ve met and occasionally exceeded internal deadlines for completing projects.
  • 3.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They fall within the middle of their competitors in terms of cost, but they provide good value.
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    We’re pleased with their work, and our audience has responded positively to the functionality, design, and usability.
  • 4.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I am likely to refer them.