Guernsey Electricity Website

Mar 30, 2005

The Guernsey Electricity site combines a professional corporate look with a highly accessible structure. I have tried to emphasise the most used areas of the site (primarily the online services) while still allowing users several ways of navigating to the page they want. The site includes several areas of dynamic content such as the animated javascript news ticker and the product listings in the retail section. This content is provided from a Microsoft SQL Server database using ASP. The site went live March 2005.

The homepage uses the standard layout and includes some welcome information and a javascript and css news ticker.

It was becoming increasingly difficult for our meter-readers to gain access to peoples property so we added a facility to the site for people to enter their own electricity meter readings and ensure they are accurately billed. This service was extremely popular and was the largest driver of traffic to the site.

We added a section to the site to allow people to enter their account number and pay their bills online. Credit card payments were taken by a secure third party payment service which was integrated into the site.

Due to the popularity of the other online services we decided to add the facility to view your electricity statements online. This project required a high level of security to ensure people were who they claimed to be (the sign-up process was integrated with back-end systems and passwords were sent by traditional post). We also needed to ensure that other peoples statements were not available to other logged-in users.

As a utility provider we had an ethical responsibility to maximise accessibility. In order to achieve this the entire site was implemented using CSS rather than table based layouts and it’s standards compliance was taken very seriously, although in places compromises were made to ensure a better viewing experience. The site also implements an alternate set of high contrast stylesheets with a simpler layout, larger (scalable) text and fewer images