Kiwanis is a global organization of volunteers dedicated to changing the world through service to children and communities. The Kiwanis Service Leadership Programs has a membership of nearly 600,000 men, women, and youth in more than 16,000 clubs in 80 countries and geographic areas. Kiwanians volunteer over 12 million hours and invest more than $107 million yearly in communities around the world.
Four years ago, Kiwanis.org. was designed with a free open source content management system that was neither user-friendly nor intuitive. The client found it difficult to use, and staff had to be trained and retrained in its system processes. With multiple microsites and the need for increasing flexibility in site management, Kiwanis wanted a much more user-friendly CMS for its redesigned site.
Kiwanis turned to BoxCrush® for the redevelopment of the site. Dan Finney, President of Box Crush, explains:
“Having worked with Kiwanis for years, we have the benefit of understanding their organizational structure, the need for multiple efficient, complementary microsites, and the desire for a CMS that offered flexibility and ease of use.”
Kiwanis needed a parent site and several microsites that were easy to navigate, with a content management system that provided flexibility, design and development options, and user-friendly management. It was important that this site fulfill Kiwanis’ need for website management shared by staff with varying technical skill levels, while offering the capability to launch multiple microsites that complement the Kiwanis design and brand. The site also needed to offer a diverse menu of interactivity and social media modules with options for simple modifications.
The CMS architecture needed to handle Kiwanis’ specific development requirements, and be expandable as new microsites are added during the coming years. The specific requirements included:
- Ability to use Flash within the site
- The ability to support multiple languages, starting with German, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Japanese, and Chinese
- A CMS that was easy to use across various technical skill levels
- Support for a workflow that included authors, approvers, and administrators
- Ability to accommodate standards compliant custom design with valid Tableless HTML and CSS
- Ability to seamlessly handle multiple microsites which complement the Kiwanis brand standards
- Ability to create custom modules for features such as the Club Locator and Custom Polls
- Ability to easily customize social media modules as a templated approach to all program sites
“We reviewed various CMS options and chose the one that best fit Kiwanis’ needs. Then, we customized it with various modules for multiple applications. We were able to collaborate with the Kiwanis IT team, allowing them direct access to the project, enabling us to prototype and refine features based on their requirements.”
Box Crush created the new Kiwanis site in 60 days, taking the Kiwanis design roughs, developing templates, setting up the language localization and workflow integration, and customizing a club locator. The site was developed in ASP.NET, SQL Server and Sitefinity CMS.
In the case of the Worldwide Service Project microsite, BoxCrush created the custom design. Following the Kiwanis brand standards complementing the main design, Worldwide Service Project stands alone as an independent website within a website. Offered in eight languages, the Worldwide Service Project website automatically appears in the end user’s default language and presents only translated pages out of the English version’s site map. Translation is seamless from one language to another, including taglines, headlines and subheads, tooltips and hovers. With customized comment polls in all eight official Kiwanis-supported languages, the Worldwide Service Project website had an accelerated timeline and actually launched prior to the Kiwanis.org site.
The Worldwide Service Project website is one of many microsites that will launch within the first year. Each will live within Kiwanis.org but be self-contained websites in and of themselves, each with a separate mission and goal. As both the Kiwanis.org and the Worldwide Service Project microsite were developed, Box Crush created sites that featured:
- Cleaner user interface
- Support for multiple languages
- Unique design and graphic interfaces
- User-friendly CMS with Authors, Approvers and Administrators
- Ability to develop custom modules
BoxCrush was able to take the Kiwanis design for the parent site and template it, develop the language localization features, solidify workflow integration and customize additional modules to meet and exceed client requirements. The new sites reduced web administration, increased flexibility in design yet ease of brand consistency management, reduced training sessions for the client, integrated a user-friendly CMS, and increased implementation of social media features. With so many different microsites planned, the need for further customization will likely be great. Box Crush has designed and developed the parent site to enable customization to accommodate client specifications.