Building ways to maximize kids' potential
When a nonprofit needed a new website to fulfill its mission, we helped build a way to maximize kids' potential.
Kids and teens need a safe, welcoming place to call their own. Whether it’s a place to finish homework after school or an opportunity to unwind and have fun, both youth and parents thrive on safe and inclusive programs and services. The Boys & Girls Club of King County (BGCKC) provides those things to children and families in the greater Seattle area.
Our content team helped build a new website that allows BGCKC to better engage with the young people and families that it supports, as well as its donors and volunteers.
Mission: To inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible, and caring citizens.
Slalom’s local model means that we work and play in the same communities where we live—a model that amplifies the importance of investing in our local communities. For our National General Manager, Tom Chew, the Boys & Girls Club of King County was an ideal organization to channel his time and expertise.
Chew, who played soccer through the Boys & Girls Club as a kid, was pleased to partner with the Club when he learned that it needed technology and IT help. “It just felt right,” says Chew. “Slalom has a number of employees with kids that are involved in the Clubs, and we share that local neighborhood connection.” He hopes that the new website will allow the BGCKC to better connect with local parents, while servicing the range of youth involved in its programs.
The partnership has also prompted Chew to reflect on the young people in his own life: “I think about my kids and the example that I’m setting for them,” he says. “As they grow up, I want them to have an opportunity to be connected and engaged in our community.”
“Slalom has a huge opportunity to help the future generation maximize its potential. If we can help to increase graduation rates, if we can help give kids a safe place to go after school, there’s a much better potential for them to realize what’s possible."
Ready for a change
The Boys & Girls Club of King County was ready for a new website. It wanted to:
Enable content updates: Before, all updates had to funnel through the BGCKC’s two-person IT team. It wanted to reduce the bottleneck and empower individual clubs to create and publish their own content.
Migrate to cloud hosting: Moving to the cloud eliminates the need for the BGCKC to rely on an internal server—reducing maintenance costs, decreasing site downtime, and allowing it to make the most of its limited IT budget.
Unify the user experience and refresh the look and feel: It wanted to create a new and consistent design for all local clubs, and unveil a fresh new face to the site to better connect kids, teens, parents, donors, and volunteers with the content they need.
This project was an opportunity for us to give back to a local non-profit—and meet the needs of the site’s various audiences, from the club owners who want to enter information and the volunteers who want to find opportunities to the teens and parents who want to find activities and program details.
We started by listening. We asked the BGCKC to think about its current site—what’s most important? What’s working? What isn’t? What’s no longer needed? And what features would you like to have?
From there, we were ready to design, build, and deploy the new site.
"Slalom really exemplifies corporate responsibility ... Every Slalom team member on the project brought expertise and joy to the work!”
Fresh new interface
The Boys & Girls Club of King County’s fresh new website boasts:
Updated visual design and content structure
Subsites for individual clubs, events, and information
Integration with Bing maps for club and event locations
Improved Events pages to allow clubs to feature events and roll all events into a single listing
Technical notes: SharePoint 2013 on Windows Azure, provisioned through PowerShell script
In addition to migrating the site from on-premises to the cloud, we created training documentation and facilitated training sessions to educate BGCKC users on the new platform. The BGCKC once had one person equipped to make website content updates; it now has 35 and counting.
“We never could have made this much progress this quickly without the pro-bono help from Slalom.”
Kids and families first
Its new website is helping the Boys & Girls Club of King County better reach the young people—and families—that it supports.
Better connect with its audiences: Thanks to a more usable site design, the BGCKC’s audiences can more easily locate the content they need.
Amplify donor outreach: “40% of our funding comes from donors,” says Mendelow. “We needed the site to be a development and fundraising platform—this refresh really explodes the potential for that.”
Quicker, easier site updates—by anyone: Now that each individual club can create and publish its own content, site features and events are more relevant and up-to-date. Club owners are empowered to share the information that their parents, children, and volunteers need, and the BGCKC’s IT team can focus on mission-critical tasks, not website updates.
"Slalom really exemplifies corporate responsibility—from Tom Chew’s support as an engaged board volunteer, to directly sponsoring organizations that help our community to taking on this major pro-bono work on our fantastic new website," says Calvin Lyons, President and CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of King County. "Slalom is a model for other companies in terms of giving back to the community. Every Slalom team member on the project brought expertise and joy to the work!”