2020 has been a year full of unexpected surprises and challenges. In March, the coronavirus had reached the United States and had begun spreading quickly causing federal and state governments to take action to ensure public safety, including the development and passing of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). As the pandemic spread, many more eyes turned to the government to watch how they were navigating this new unmarked territory.
The Pandemic Response Accountability Committee (PRAC) created PandemicOversight.gov to display the details of the $2.6 trillion coronavirus relief spending provided by the CARES Act. The website allows the public interactive tools for understanding who received coronavirus funding, how much they’ve received, and how the funds are being spent. The website also provides tools for the public to report fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement of coronavirus relief funding, as well as helpful information to protect yourself against fraudulent activity.
Mobomo was brought in to perform the redesign and development of the website, which had initially launched as pandemic.oversight.gov earlier this year. The Mobomo team was able to do a complete overhaul of the legacy platform and re-launch the system in just over five weeks’ time with the new website having been officially launched to the public on September 10th. Since the launch, the website has received thousands of visitors interested in learning more about who, where, and how coronavirus relief funding is being spent.
“Transparency in government is critical in these uncertain times and the mission of the PRAC strives to provide that public service. I’m very proud of what our team has developed and hope the website helps people see how relief funding is being distributed.” – Brian Lacey, CEO.
Not Your Average Government Website
The Mobomo team redesigned PandemicOversight.gov with the goal of incorporating modern theming and a clean design that many of your traditional government information sites lack, but did so while incorporating 18F and US Web Design Standards best practices. Mobomo’s User Experience team worked with the PRAC to develop mobile-first, responsive design templates that mesh the innovative branding and theming with the high-fidelity interactive visualizations that are key to communicating coronavirus funding activity.
Let’s Get Technical
The legacy pandemic.oversight.gov was developed in Drupal 8 and hosted in Amazon Web Services (AWS). For the redesign and re-launch of the site, the Mobomo team decided to rebuild the content management system leveraging the latest version of Drupal 9 and deployed the solution within the Microsoft Azure Websites platform-as-a-service (PaaS) environment. Mobomo developed a number of custom feature integrations with visualization partners Domo and Woolpert, enhanced search indexing for browsing various oversight reports and investigations, and optimized process for users to communicate instances of fraud, waste, and abuse through secure channels.
In order to meet the tight five-week window for design, development, and deploying the new website – the Mobomo team leveraged containerization and Lando for streamlining local development and hooking into the continuous integration, continuous development (CI/CD) pipeline. Mobomo also worked with the Smartronix Azure Cloud team to architect a zero-downtime deployment procedure to allow seamless promotion of new code the public environment.
“This is a great team on both sides of the table. For such an expedited delivery schedule, it is critical for all the contract partners and government stakeholders to stay Agile and collaborate effectively to succeed.” – Austin White, VP of Federal Services.
For more information on Mobomo’s work with the Federal Government click here.
About the PRAC
The Pandemic Response Accountability Committee (PRAC) was established by the CARES Act as part of the committee of the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE). The PRAC has developed a Strategic Plan for the next five years that details how PRAC will serve the public by promoting transparency of funds and by preventing and detecting fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement of said funds. The committee will work closely with the Federal Inspectors General to support all affected by the pandemic.