Foster Solutions (FSI) has built an affordable yet sophisticated local government website framework called WebMuni, using the open source content management system (CMS) WordPress. Webmuni provides a streamlined system to manage local government content, and the best news is that your community owns the code…. It’s open source.
WebMuni has an enhanced and organized database that seamlessly integrates local government activities. Staff can easily add content for meetings, projects, documents, departments/boards/committees which are are organizes the vast amount of content from forms, minutes, press releases, etc. by department/board/committee and by function.
The WebMuni framework is independent of the “theme”, which provides the look-and-feel. FSI can build a custom theme that fits your style, and it will include all the current technology and optimized for all sized devices.
WebMuni also has advanced functionality like an automated email alert system for weather alerts, emergencies, press releases, meeting notices, etc.
Why Open Source?
Local government websites need to be a robust Content Management Systems (CMS). They need to maintain information on departments and boards and committees, and also a multitude of documents such as minutes, agendas, forms, applications, etc.
One option for local governments is to contract with a company that specializes in municipal websites, that have their own proprietary CMS. Usually this includes an annual contract for the service.
We believe a better solution for municipalities is an open source CMS, and WordPress has the largest developer community and website base in the world. The advantage of using a framework based in WordPress as a framework is there are thousands of developers building websites using these tools, so you will not be beholden to a single company.
Staff members, with modest computer skills, need to be able to maintain the website. FSI’s framework has a sophisticated template system so that pages are automatically laid out based on the content, documents, people, etc. Staff needs to keep up the roster and documents and they will automatically be placed in the correct locations on the website.