Our work

Empowering an agency to reduce substance harm in New Zealand

High Alert

Project background

As a new multi-organisational and multi-disciplinary initiative, Drug Information and Alerts Aotearoa New Zealand (DIANZ) provides information to the public to help reduce drug harm in our communities. DIANZ needed a new brand and a new website for New Zealanders to receive any information, incidents, or emerging trends in the effects and use of substances. There was a clear goal from the beginning of the project: to reduce substance harm in New Zealand.

DIANZ approached Silverstripe to create the new brand and website to allow people across New Zealand to report unexpected effects of drugs, receive notifications, and learn more about harmful substances.

High Alert main logo

Project scope

During the early stages of the project, DIANZ brought in our Strategy & Design team to lay the foundation for what would become the brand and the website through strategy workshops. With a unique target audience of people who use drugs, the team needed to produce a brand that balanced the authority of information from a trustworthy source with being approachable to encourage people to engage with the messages on the website. Every stage of the process was iterative to engage in user testing with audiences to see how the brand would resonate with them. 

Through the extensive research and user testing process, the team was able to come up with a brand that resonated with both the users of the site and the key stakeholders for the project—High Alert. Taking the playfulness of the word “High” and balancing it with the authority of “Alert”, they were able to give the brand a bold, playful, and structured voice that DIANZ were looking for. Once the new brand for the project was decided, it informed the creative process for the brand and web design moving forward. Our team ensured that all the fonts, colours, and logo maintained a good balance of playfulness and authority to continue to resonate with the key audience. 

For the visual design of the High Alert website, the team maintained the brand voice while pushing the boundaries for the front-end design for a government site. They integrated animation into the logo on the homepage and incorporated unusual use of columns and full-bleed blocks of colour throughout the site while delivering an intuitive experience to the users.

High Alert business cards mockup

Project challenges

As the main purpose of High Alert is to notify people when new dangerous drugs are discovered in the country, our team needed to build functionality into the site that would let the team at DIANZ alert the public. Building on the foundation of Silverstripe CMS, our developers created the “Notifications” section where people can subscribe to alerts from the High Alert site. For people who want to know when unusual effects from drugs have been reported, they can now subscribe and receive emails directly to their inbox.  

While alerting people to when unusual effects from drugs were reported was important to DIANZ, it was equally important for people landing on the site to be able to report unusual effects from drugs on the website. The team created an area of the High Alert site that allows people to anonymously report unusual effects from drugs with our User Defined Forms. This helps DIANZ collect data and identify dangerous activity and trends surrounding drugs in New Zealand. They can send this data out to their support network, letting health professionals and social services know when Kiwis are being affected by bad batches of drugs.

High Alert devices

Key outcomes

Silverstripe was able to build a brand and a website for DIANZ that resonated with their unique target audience—people who use drugs and their friends and family members who are concerned about the risks surrounding substance use. With a unique brand identity, graphics and icons, and a brand new platform to publish alerts, advice, and news about recreational drugs, the team at High Alert are empowered to help reduce substance harm within New Zealand.

High Alert screen shot

Services provided

  • Workshops
  • Discovery
  • Wireframing
  • UX & design
  • Branding
  • Front and back end web development
  • Dedicated testing resource
  • Ongoing UX & UI discussions
  • Project Management
  • Solution Architect consultation
  • Programme Management
  • Account Management
  • Managed cloud hosting
  • 24/7 New Zealand-based support

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