Trying to bring the city further into the Internet Age, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer on Wednesday evening used a Google Hangout chat room to kick off his drive to thoroughly overhaul the city's cumbersome and often confusing website.
Faulconer said his goal is to easily accomplish online any task that requires interacting directly with workers at City Hall.
As an example, he is conducting the search for website design contractor through a Web-based survey rather than a paper-based request for proposals.
"A lot of small businesses can be intimidated by the RFP process," he said.
In a half-hour video conference call, Faulconer discussed the project with city officials and independent Web designers, such as Jessica Hilt, technical outreach and program analyst at UC San Diego. Hilt stressed that the most important task was to make sure that the site worked well for users.
"We've seen some major debacles in user experience in website designs, particularly on government websites," Hilt said.
Faulconer said he is seeking vendors with experience in user experience testing and usability research, as well as website templates, online brand development, pattern libraries and community engagement.