The Project At a Glance

The Challenge

To allow the public to easily contribute to Stuff Nation by replacing an outdated web form and process.

The Solution

The move from an outdated web form to a fully considered experience - new, easy-to-use user portal and platform.

What We Did

Strategy
Design
Development
Project Management
Collaboration with operations and editorial teams

The Outcome

Easier submission of content.
Better integrations into other workflows.
Time savings for editorial staff.
Quick response to trending news stories.

nz website service design

A new approach

Fairfax had an existing mechanism for users to submit their own stories, however the process behind it didn’t work well for the business. So they needed a new strategy for receiving and processing the content. It had to be a fully accessible submission process that worked across a wide range of devices. It also needed to allow Fairfax to check and moderate content before it was published.

Ackama worked with Stuff Nation to move them from an outdated web form to a fully considered experience; from submission, through to email updates, feedback, and a conclusion that encourages positive ongoing submission.

nz website service design

Behind the scenes

When embarking on a project that enables anyone to submit any type of content, it’s very important to make sure there is a clear and easy-to-navigate workflow.

The first phase of this project was all about the behind the scenes processes so that the service could deliver user upgrades that created efficiencies for the business. Each piece of content is moderated before being published and it often covers breaking news and time-critical events, so we developed tools that provided streamlined processes for the news desk.

The main challenge around user-generated content is the wide variety and quality of the content submitted. We needed to create a solution where a whole process can flow directly from users onto stuff.co.nz with minimal human intervention. In order to achieve this we paired the submission mechanism with a moderation system for constructively improving content that users submit.

Now instead of an email workflow that was slow and difficult to manage, Fairfax has focused pathways for user-generated content. This makes for better quality of content, a shorter publishing cycle and the ability to move quickly if a situation is developing.

nz website service design

Design and development

Our design team commenced the Stuff Nation project while Fairfax was undergoing a brand overhaul. We produced a work plan in collaboration with their busy design team and consulted with them through the process.

We evolved a simple interface to permit focus on writing well and structuring content. The customer facing user submission forms were developed to facilitate both mobile submission, consideration of desktop and the wide range of media types and newsroom workflows that a submission would be managed through.

The experience goes beyond a form, providing interfaces to review feedback, drafts and comments, and view the past submissions and performance of the pieces that were published on the Stuff platform.