What was the scope of their involvement?
Our website is complex and there is a lot of information that needs to be conveyed through the site. The biggest challenge—aside from making it responsive on mobile devices—was creating a nice, clean design that would communicate what we do for our primary audiences, in an attractive and easy to understand way. They met with me and with individuals from each department in the company, in order to get an idea of what each stakeholder needed to be represented on the site.
The site was built using ExpressionEngine. The business directory is one of our most used features, and it had been quite problematic. All our members were included in a rather outdated database software. Getting that to interface with a modern site had its own challenges, but Papercut was able to do it. Similarly, our events calendar is another high-traffic part of our site, which also interfaces directly with our database. Papercut was able to connect it and have it work seamlessly.
In total, they’ve designed several sites for us, including the main chamber page and one for a new economic initiative we were launching. The latter one does not interface with our database, but it does have a lot of complex data on the backend. We have gone through an intense process, creating some custom data-entry tools, especially for the insider report section. The data we enter on the backend is represented visually on the frontend.
SEO work was offered as part of the web design. They included some tools on the backend, so that, going forward, we could handle this aspect on our own.
What is the team composition?
Taylor Hartley [Marketing and Communications Director] was our project manager. We had several meetings with their designer and a couple of other team members. I typically worked directly with two or three members at a time, but the size of the team varied.
How did you come to work with Papercut?
As a membership organization, we had certain requirements for selecting a vendor. We put out a formal RFP [request for proposals] to several companies that offered web design services. Many of them declined simply because the site was so large and complex, which narrowed the selection down on its own. We looked at the quality of work produced by the remaining three or four candidates and decided on Papercut.
We gave them a trial on a smaller site we were working on, an online magazine for member news. We were impressed with the work they did on that front. Their price wasn’t the lowest, but the quality was our primary concern.
How much have you invested with them?
The chamber site had a cost of $60,000. The one for our economic initiative had a cost of $40,000. The total cost of Papercut’s work has been $100,000 so far.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working with Papercut in late 2014. The magazine site launched in 2015, and we began working on the chamber site and the economic project site that same year. Both of those launched in 2016.
We still engage Papercut for break-fix work on the sites they designed, but we don’t have any new projects at the moment.