City of Kent to redesign its website to enhance engagement

Staff says ‘current website lacks the functionality to meet the city’s business needs’

The city of Kent will do a major redesign of its website in an effort to enhance resident engagement and deliver important information at the right time.

The City Council approved a $219,153 contract for five years with Granicus to redo the website kentwa.gov. Granicus has primary offices in Denver; St. Paul, Minnesota; Washington. D.C.; and London.

More than 4,500 government agencies contract with Granicus to modernize their online services, web presence and communications strategies, according to the company’s website. Granicus says about 250 million people get information about governments through the company’s software.

“We offer seamless digital solutions that help government actively reach, inform and engage citizens for a better civic experience,” according to Granicus.

The city of Kent previously redesigned its website in 2016 under a contract with California-based Vision Internet. Granicus acquired Vision Internet and its contracts in 2018.

“The current website lacks the functionality to meet the city’s business needs,” according to city documents. “A new website will enhance resident engagement through an updated customer experience, obtain resident feedback, deliver important information at the right time and increase the number of subscribers.

“Granicus’ content management solution, GovAccess Professional, meets the needs of modern digital government allowing residents to perform self-service and increase transparency through an information-centered hub by making website design and maintenance easy.”

City Councilmember Marli Larimer asked Brian Rambonga, city IT project management office supervisor, at the council’s June 8 Committee of the Whole meeting about which other cities have websites that Kent’s redesigned website might look like.

Boston, San Jose and Amarillo are among the city websites that Kent city staff likes and looks to reference for content and design, Rambonga told Larimer in a follow-up email.

Granicus told Rambonga that it will take four to five months to implement the new website.

“We are looking to deploy in early fourth quarter of this year,” Rambonga said.

The initial term of the agreement with Granicus is for five years, commencing in 2021 and terminating in 2026, with options for the city to renew annually thereafter for additional four-year terms for a maximum contract term through 2030.

Granicus will provide all necessary software, implementation services, and training for the redesign of the city’s website. The total contract cost, including five years of subscription will not exceed $219,153. The city will pay for the contract from IT’s existing project budget.

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