Federal Communications Commission

Modernizing a legacy federal system

Project

FCC.gov

Tech Specs

  • Migration from Drupal 6 to 7
  • Custom third-party integrations
  • Mobile-friendly, responsive design
  • Section 508-compliant for accessibility
  • FIPS-compliant cloud-hosted solution

Background

Cumbersome, outdated federal website

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) relies on its website to provide regulatory guidance to millions of visitors each year across various industries. The old, outdated site was hard to navigate for users seeking information and frustrating for stakeholders responsible for content management.

FCC needed a modern, mobile-responsive site that was both relevant to the public and easier to manage internally. CivicActions was engaged to build the new site within a fixed-scope contract on a tight timeline and budget while also addressing stakeholders priorities as they evolved.

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Approach

Bringing agile to government

We trained FCC in agile practices, communicating with the product owner and stakeholders throughout the project. Together we curated priorities and made sure the end result met user needs, helping the organization move away from traditional waterfall methodology.

Smooth content migration

We performed a massive content migration from Drupal 6 to Drupal 7 and consolidated content from various legacy systems, with no disruption to FCC’s very active user community.

Designing for users

We made the site more consistent by organizing the information architecture and also improved the search feature so visitors can quickly navigate to the resources they need. The user experience of FCC.gov is now as intuitive as modern consumer sites.

Simplified content management

We added access control to allow FCC’s many content creators to manage their own content without compromising the integrity of the site’s design. We also helped make the creation of content more pleasant and efficient by adding a robust text editor.

Accessibility for all users

FCC serves users with all levels of ability and is itself responsible for the accessibility of 21st century communications. We adhered to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines in scanning and updating the site for compliance and usability.

Testing to ensure quality code

To make sure all new code worked properly, we used Behat, a behavior-driven development testing framework that is written in English and can double as user acceptance test criteria. Behat tests were configured to automatically run when new code was merged.

Turn-key solution for deployment

Due to security restrictions, we could not have full access to the production server, which made deployment of the new site complicated. We architected turn-key ways to deploy to production so the IT folks at FCC could do it themselves.

Impact

  • FCC learned agile methods and can carry the benefits into future projects
  • Legacy content from various systems is migrated into one modern platform
  • The public has easier access to regulations through a well-designed site
  • FCC administrators save time and money with efficient content management
  • The new site is strong and stable as a result of quality assurance testing

Explore

See our work

FCC.gov

From the client’s perspective

Modernizing the FCC.gov Website

Contributions to the Drupal community

Hook Update Deploy Tools
Migration Tools

69,706

pieces of
migrated content

19

bureaus and offices
housed within FCC

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