The Association of Insurance and Risk Managers (Airmic) is the leading membership organisation for the insurance and risk management industry. Their membership is composed of senior executives who control an annual insurance spend of £5bn and represent most of the FTSE 100 companies.
Airmic exist to benefit its members. They do this through organising conferences, seminars and distributing research and best practices over the web. Fulfilling this mission had become increasingly difficult and time consuming due to an inflexible proprietary CMS. After evaluating several options Airmic decided that Cameron and Wilding's proposed Drupal solution was the best platform to enable them to achieve their current and future objectives
The main complaints Airmic received about their old site were about how difficult it was to find content. Making it quick and easy for members to locate relevant content was crucial to Airmic as they provide their members with a large amount of research in the form of reports, guides and survey documents.
Airmic work with a range of partners, mostly large insurance companies such as AXA, Lloyd's and Zurich. These organisations have large amounts of high-value content such as white papers, reports and blog posts which are all publicly available. Airmic wanted to create a single point of contact to search through this content.
How do you make a social network for people who do not use Facebook and have little interest in technology or the web? This was the challenge Airmic put to Cameron & Wilding. Airmic host 12 Special Interest Groups (SIGs), many of whom have regular and successful offline meetings. One of the main aims of the new site was to foster greater online networking and knowledge sharing between members.
We started by working with Airmic in a series of half-day workshops to strategise on the best approach to their problems and consult on the best solution for their needs. Airmic then engaged a third party design company to create a set of designs to be used across the site.
To make it easier for members to find the content they want, we implemented Apache Solr Search, to provide a more powerful, drill-down search. Apache Solr is an open-source, enterprise search package that integrates closely with Drupal. Using Apache Solr allows members to narrow down their search based on existing taxonomy terms, content types and dates.
PDF documents are central to Airmic's member acquisition strategy. These guides and reports cater to a very niche audience, many of whom would benefit from Airmic membership. To enable Airmic to maintain a relationship with these users, all valuable content is available to registered users only. We used Flexpaper, an open-source PDF viewer, to allow members to read documents without leaving their browser.
To create a single point of contact for members to search all the white papers, reports and blog posts generated by Airmic’s partners, we chose to use Nutch, an open-source web crawler. We used it to build "Power Search", a mini-Google within airmic.com where members can easily access this partner content. Nutch regularly crawls partner websites, is indexed and exposed to Apache Solr. This allows members to then use it to search both Airmic and partner content simultaneously.
Airmic's new website provides a much improved way of finding content through both search and information architecture. This benefits members by helping them quickly find specialised content.
The content management capabilities of the Drupal CMS allow Airmic staff to quickly create and edit content without external assistance and has removed an extra layer of cost.
Finally, We have provided a solid platform for growth and innovation, which is capable of supporting new functionality in future phases, such mobile apps.