The new website of the City of Turku and the renewed regional event calendar have been opened. The new services have replaced the old ones as of 1 July 2015. The previous website reform was ten years ago.

The new web services have been planned with the mobile-first principle, and because of this the site will adjust to the screens of mobile phones and tablets. The web service will also take the first steps in filtering content for different target groups or based on the location of the user.

Visuality and phenomenality have a bigger role than before. As the most popular city of social media in Finland, Turku wants to keep well on display the social media channels, such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Still incomplete

The web service reform has been a huge task for the city and its divisions’ content providers. It has taken over a year, and though the biggest part is now behind there will be a lot of work to do even after the summer holidays. The Swedish and English language contents are still lacking, for instance.

The news archives will be built and the new service map and Föli’s Journey Planner will be joined as part of the web service during autumn. The findability of contact information will be improved in summer. Also the event calendar will face small repairs related to usability and event input.

During the rest of the year we will build functionalities, with which the user can tailor the site to suit their needs. Also digital services and the online shop will be developed during autumn, after which they will also become part of the comprehensive turku.fi web service.

The user feedback is extremely important and it guides our future work.

Päivi Saalasto

Despite the slight incompleteness we decided to publish the new web service and calendar now, because there will be less web traffic during the summer holiday season than, for example, in autumn when schools and day care centres open their doors. Additionally we will get feedback from customers in good time as they use the service in their everyday tasks. The user feedback is extremely important and it guides our future work, says Program Manager Päivi Saalasto who has been responsible for the DriveTurku project.

The numbers of monthly visits to the turku.fi website and the event calendar are hundreds of thousands and individual page loads are counted in millions. Numbers are slightly lower during summer, especially on the turku.fi site.

Turku has high goals

The web service reform is a big step for the City of Turku towards becoming a forerunner in digital services of public administration – even globally.

Our goals are set really high as we want to offer our citizens and other customers top class tools for finding services and information about our beloved city. The turku.fi web service is a very important and fast communication channel together with social media, and we will invest heavily in its development and versatility in the coming years, says Saara Malila, Director of Communications of the City of Turku.

We want to offer our citizens and other customers top class tools for finding services and information about our beloved city.

Saara Malila

The web services have been built by using the scrum model of agile development and the free open source system Drupal 7. This means we have bought work and know-how, not the system itself. The training of the city personnel for web communications and system use has mainly been arranged with in-house resources.

Heaps of positive feedback

Development versions of the new turku.fi website and the event calendar became open for public in the beginning of June. Users have been asked for feedback online in different ways, and already over 700 persons have stated their opinions.

A big thank you for everyone who has given us feedback thus far. The overwhelming majority of feedback has been positive which means that we are on the right track with the reform. Especially the clarity of structure and navigation, the findability of information and the impressive visual looks have been commended. We have also received plenty of good suggestions for development, says Program Manager Päivi Saalasto. 

You can still give feedback via the feedback pop-up windows on the site, or directly via the Paikalla feedback service of the city. All feedback will be carefully read through and they have an integral role as Turku improves its web services.

 

Keywords: