APEC NZ 2021
A three year partnership between Satellite and MFAT delivering world class virtual diplomacy to the 21 APEC economies and global media while showcasing New Zealand innovation to the world.
Thanks to the COVID-19 Pandemic, Cabinet made the decision that New Zealand would host APEC in 2021 entirely virtually. This was an unprecedented challenge, both with the timeframes available and the fact APEC had never been hosted for a full calendar year in this fashion. By the end of November 2021 over 3000 meetings had successfully been held via the Online registration system and the integration with the virtual meeting platform. The project enhanced New Zealand’s reputation as a digital leader, by delivering robust, stable, fit for purpose platforms to conduct the business of APEC without disruption from COVID-19.
Digital Design Language
At the project’s inception, the APEC design team didn’t exist. Satellite happily took the reins and created a digital brand guideline and toolset which adhered to both the W3C Accessibility and NZ Government Web Standards. We pulled from our shared understanding of users, behaviours and experience building great digital products to create a grounded, and simple set of guidelines which helped set the tone for the rest of the digital products.
Designed with a clean, fresh and uniquely New Zealand feel, the APEC website was both highly functional and immediately appealing. With kiwi imagery and links to New Zealand’s heritage, the site engaged users while providing essential information in an accessible and intuitive way.
The website was accessed by global and local participants, media, the general public and other interested parties. The design and UX catered to all aspects of this diverse audience. Behind the scenes, Satellite managed the CMS, and trained APEC users to be able to create and curate content rich pages.
The key planning and administration hub for the APEC team; the Registration Portal began its journey as a functional tool capable of many things: verifying users with INZ, uploading delegate headshots and passport scans and much more. With the move from the real world event and the rise of the virtual, the emphasis of the registration portal remained the same: to ensure that accreditation officers had an easy, intuitive and accountable experience to register and manage their delegation. The Satellite team provided full support to the APEC admin team throughout the project.
The digital ‘front door’ for the APEC delegates, a crucial first impression. With the virtual experience now firmly in place, it
was critical that the Participant Portal provided a connection between the users and their APEC experience. Late in the project, with a significant focus on what was now digital APEC, Satellite worked with the team to raise the bar of the virtual experience. The portal went from mostly functional to experiential and exciting — personalisation of name, timezone and session schedule, native New Zealand audio, beautiful imagery, an easy to use dashboard all came together to provide the user with an immersive, enjoyable and intrinsically New Zealand experience.
Leading into the high profile meetings the APEC Media team tasked Satellite with creating a platform whereby global media
could search, view and download content in a user-friendly way. Overcoming the technical and logistical challenge of providing large broadcast files to a wide variety of users, the Media portal was engaging and easy to use and contributed to the significant value of the media exposure at a crucial point in the project.
Security was paramount for the APEC project and top of Satellite’s mind with every project decision. Satellite utilised the in-house knowledge of their Technical Director and team to ensure the APEC system was safe and secure. Satellite also provided 24/7, eyes on screens, monitoring and support to ensure system availability. Undergoing numerous third party and external penetration tests while adhering to government best practice, Satellite was pleased to deliver a world class system that was able to keep malicious activity at bay.
Fundamental to the project’s success was a transparent and highly accountable partnership between the APEC and Satellite teams. Satellite were on the journey for over three years, maintaining the same core team, and were integral to the overall solution and delivery of the APEC event management system and website.