State Transit Authority

State Transit Authority


The Client

The NSW State Transit Authority is one of the largest and most modern bus operations anywhere in the world. The STA websites provide transport information such as timetables, maps and ticketing options, plus corporate information such as career and business opportunities.

The Challenges

 The previous website built in CMS Made Easy, suffered a number of issues relating to the administration of online content. These issues resulted in costly support contracts and reduced productivity. The tender identified the following issues:

  1. Administration is cumbersome and inefficient due to duplication of work, multiple logins and the difficulty in sharing content from site to site.
  2. Inability to schedule file uploads at a particular date and time. These limitations have prescribed the past need for support outside of business hours, which has proven expensive.
  3. Does not support version control
  4. No workflow processes are available to support content review, to allow multiple business units to submit content for approval and publishing.
  5. Does not allow administrators to work on a parallel version of a published document. Copying and pasting between new and old versions then publishing is cumbersome and time consuming.

 PretaSite - The Solution

 The PretaSite Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Content Management System (CMS), hosted from a community Government Cloud was implemented as single integrated solution to power the corporate site and two bus websites. The three previous separate sites were converted into sub-sites with single-sign on but appear to the public as separate websites. This offered the client 'out of the box':

  • Ability to update content once applied across sub-sites – Common content for the three websites are only uploaded once instead of repeating the process three times.
  • Single search across the three sites – users searching for content on one site would include list relevant entries sourced from content across all sub-sites.
  • Ability to schedule publication of content – this allowed automated content changes out of hours.
  • Built in workflow –  sites now support content submission and approval by management identified as reviewers.
  • Version control – pages can now be edited with different states for working versions, i.e. draft and published.
  • Simultaneous editing of content items – multiple content managers can edit the sites at the same time.

 In addition PretaGov provided:

  • Private government cloud environment – shared (with other Government agencies only) use of plug-ins, redundancy, guaranteed 99.98% availability, 24 hour priority one support, comprehensive SaaS cloud support and maintenance, in addition to comprehensive SLA's for lower priority software issues and end user content management assistance during business hours.
  • Best security record of any open source CMS protecting the sites from hacking. - Plone’s excellent security record is a result of constant vigilance and good coding practices combined with security reviews. The US National Vulnerability Database reports that the Plone/Zope/Python stack has by far the lowest number of vulnerabilities by far compared to Drupal, Joomla and other PHP-based stacks.

Major Outcomes

The project resulted in the following positive outcomes:

  • Significant cost savings – The adoption of Software-as-a-service (Saas) involved the relocation from dedicated servers to the PretaGov private cloud for Government. This shifted the focus of ICT from asset ownership and operation to activities that enhance customer service. The cost benefits are achieved through the Cloud model of re-use of existing software, the cost of installing new plug-ins, sharing of the infrastructure and sharing the cost of support/maintenance with other agencies in the PretaGov Private Cloud.

In addition PretaSite's in built feature allowing scheduled publishing eliminated the need for content management support outside of business hours, which was expensive.

Even though support costs were reduced significantly, PretaGov provides 24 x 7 priority one support, guaranteed rapid response and resolution. This is essential for any major transport website.

  • Significant time saving when updating content - as the single sign-on allows common content to be upload once and reflected across all subsites. Staff could then focus on other service delivery tasks.
  • Major business process improvements – The built in workflow allowed content submission and publication approval by management identified as reviewers.
  • Increased efficiency - The solution now provides version control facilitating multiple working copies of content. Similarly the simultaneous editing of content items means multiple staff members can work on managing content at once.

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