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How NFPA Is Bringing Paper Processes Online With Drupal 8

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Firewise USA™'s paper application process existed for 15 years but, in 2016, the Firewise team decided to bring the process online. They chose to build this process on top of Drupal 8.

Since moving to Drupal, the Wildfire Division of the National Fire Protection Association has streamlined their processes - enabling them to more efficiently deliver on their program’s goal: teaching individuals how to adapt to living with wildfires and take community action to prevent loss of property.

Join us to discuss the challenges and rewards of bringing a paper process online as a Drupal 8 web app. Topics we’ll discuss:

Leveraging an agile philosophy to respond quickly to change, collaborate across disciplines and stakeholder groups and get to a working product in as little amount of time as possible.
Balancing effective deliverables with shared understanding to produce working software that meets the organization’s needs.
Organizational hurdles to overcome when adding structure and bringing an established paper application process online.

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How NFPA Is Bringing Paper Processes Online With Drupal 8

  1. 1. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Firewise 2.0 Bringing a paper process online with Drupal 8 Nov 9, 2017
  2. 2. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Speakers Aron Anderson Associate Project Manager, Wildfire Division NFPA Nick Switzer Development Director Elevated Third
  3. 3. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary What is Firewise?
  4. 4. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Empowering neighbors to work together to reduce the wildfire risk in their communities since 2002. What is Firewise?
  5. 5. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary 5 What is Firewise? The Firewise USA program teaches people how to adapt to living with wildfire to help save lives and property.
  6. 6. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary What is Firewise? Using a five-step process, communities develop an action plan guiding their residential risk reduction activities that helps residents build a safer place to live. ● The five-steps (communities must renew annually): ○ Obtain a wildfire risk assessment. ○ Form a board or committee, and create an action plan. ○ Conduct a “Firewise Day” event. ○ Invest a minimum of $2 per capita in local Firewise actions. ○ Submit an application to your state Firewise Liaison.
  7. 7. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary What is Firewise? The Firewise USA Program Approval Process ● Work is done at the local level ● New applications are submitted to the state for review and approval ● State approved applications are forward to NFPA for final approval and onboarding
  8. 8. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Moving the Process Online with Drupal 8
  9. 9. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Firewise Online The original Firewise Program application was a PDF document, all data filled in and entered into a database by hand
  10. 10. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Firewise Online The new Firewise Program app has been moved online, built in Drupal 8
  11. 11. We were open to any technology and proposals. Our priorities were cost effectiveness, product flexibility, and the developer’s ability to be UX focused and keep our target audiences in mind. Deciding on Drupal
  12. 12. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary 12 Deciding on Drupal Firewise had a few hurdles for this project: ● No in-house developers or IT Drupal support ● We were moving away from existing contracts ● Convincing Leadership (NFPA had never used Drupal)
  13. 13. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Deciding on Drupal Going from an idea to an RFP ● Re-evaluated the program and created a Firewise life cycle. ● Research and outreach with key stakeholders. ● Developed a Functional Requirements Document (FRD) which lead to the RFP. ● Long process: Nearly two years from starting Firewise 2.0 to selecting a developer.
  14. 14. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Deciding on Drupal Drupal 8 is a perfect fit for Firewise ● Multiple, complex user roles with custom permissions (D8 Core). ● Siloed access based on role in a state and/or community (Groups). ● Multi-step application process with nested data (Form API and Paragraphs). ● Reliable uptime, even during deployments (CMI).
  15. 15. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Why is Drupal a good fit for Nonprofits? ● Out of the box responsiveness- Everything is Drupal 8 supports responsive design ● Flexibility- modules, integrations, customizations ● Security- large security team, constant monitoring ● Multilingual Capabilities- Quickly translate sites into any language. Drupal 8 is multilingual throughout. Drupal 8 for Nonprofits
  16. 16. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Designing Firewise 2.0
  17. 17. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Discovery Phase Elevated Third’s in-depth discovery phase begins with a two-day discovery meeting that includes the entire Elevated Third project team and all client stakeholders. ● In this meeting, we cover everything from low-level requirements and task priority, to big ideas such as how to improve the Firewise application process from a UX and development standpoint
  18. 18. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary 18 Initial UX The Elevated Third team combined all of the notes from discovery and spent an afternoon creating an affinity diagram to help reveal patterns in the application process.
  19. 19. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary 19 Personas You can't write user stories if you don't know who your users are. During discovery, we identified three main user personas that represented five different Drupal roles. Pat, The State Liaison Jim, The Property Manager Dave, The Organizer
  20. 20. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Site Architecture and Estimation ● Content types, entities, users and roles started to take shape based on wires and flows. ● Implementation estimate, based on user stories, wires and flows.
  21. 21. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary This final Discovery deliverable defines the project vision. It combines all deliverables in one place and includes a full feature list and build estimate. The Blueprint
  22. 22. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Implementation
  23. 23. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary An Agile Mentality Continuing a collaborative process ● The team chose to continue the collaborative process from discovery that aided them well in understanding the project scope and uncovering strong solutions. ● Dev and design worked together in sprints to quickly produce working features.
  24. 24. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Sprint Planning Initial sprint planning involved the whole team, product owner included, to determine the plan and priorities for the duration of implementation.
  25. 25. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Sprint Structure An incremental development process ● The project was broken out into Two week sprints. ● Included three, 15-minute standups each week, one of which was a progress review. ● Progress and new features were demoed live with the product owner at the end of each sprint.
  26. 26. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Implementation Must-Haves The things that are essential to a successful implementation process are: ● Focused, organized meetings ● Clear, honest communication ● The right ratio of tools and docs to shared understanding. ● An eye for the details without losing site of the big picture.
  27. 27. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Drupal 8 Workflow
  28. 28. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary 28 Drupal 8 Workflow ● Simplified thanks to tools available to Drupal 8. ● Configuration managed through CMI, along with the Config Read-Only module. ● Composer used to manage dependencies and packages. Screenshot
  29. 29. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary QA & Functional Testing
  30. 30. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary QA & Functional Testing ● All testers need to work from the same test plan. ● Bugs should be reported and managed the same way across all teams. ● Releasing fixes on schedule in a dedicated testing environment is key to reducing confusion.
  31. 31. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Launch.
  32. 32. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Phased Rollout This may not work for every scenario, but we had the luxury of this being a brand new site. Our rollout included: ● A closed, beta style launch. ● Lots of testing and review in the production environment before the new system was rolled out to the general public. ● Some features needed to be in production to be fully tested (SSO).
  33. 33. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Training & Documentation
  34. 34. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Admin Training Product owner and Firewise team learned the system gradually through sprint reviews, with one larger training after the end of the final development sprint.
  35. 35. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary PDF Manuals PDF training documents targeted at specific user roles were produced and distributed. Documents were created with both new and current users in mind.
  36. 36. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Video Tutorials To make the app as easy to use as possible, we developed screencasts providing detailed walkthroughs of key user flows and made these videos publicly available.
  37. 37. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary 37 Firewise We helped Firewise transform a cumbersome paper process into a powerful digital workflow that was designed to simplify processes for internal admins and customers alike.
  38. 38. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Lessons Learned
  39. 39. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Track Everything All projects float on a sea of uncertainty. Try to limit that uncertainty by identifying all assumptions as early as you can.
  40. 40. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Plan for Contingencies Things will come up that you just didn't plan for. Have a plan for unexpected contingencies.
  41. 41. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Track Everything Manage team expectations by tracking everything. Meticulous documentation helps keep your team on the same page and avoid things like scope creep.
  42. 42. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Straight Talk Clear communication and honesty will always benefit the project. Even when the news hurts a little, don't pull punches. Dig in and find a solution as a team.
  43. 43. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Environment Parity Push to make your dev, stage and production environments as similar as possible. Software stack is important, but don't forget things like users, SSL certificates, migration data and files.
  44. 44. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Staying on Budget is a Team Effort Project budget and burn rate should be communicated frequently to everyone involved with the project This awareness of time allocation helps narrow the possible solutions.
  45. 45. ©2017 Acquia Inc. — Confidential and Proprietary Thank You!

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