Australian Public Service Commission (APSC)

Morpht created a cost effective solution to re-design, re-architect the content model and re-build four of their websites on to the GovCMS Drupal 9 SaaS platform by using our starter site Convivial for GovCMS which provides feature rich components right out-of-the-box.


The Australian Public Service Commission (APSC), is a policy agency within the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. Its purpose is to position the Australian Public Service workforce for the future to ensure it meets the demands and expectations of the Australian Government and people. It aims to continuously improve people management, manager capability and professional development across the APS.

Morpht was engaged in 2020 to upgrade four of the APSC’s sites from GovCMS 7 to GovCMS 9. This involved re-architecting the sites and improving designs.


The challenge

The APSC had four websites that required upgrading onto the GovCMS 8 platform to prepare for the migration to GovCMS 9 platform.

The vision for these site was to:

  • Deliver fresh new visual designs or improve on existing styles 
  • align their design with The Australian Government Design System (AGDS) and ensure compliance with web accessibility standards
  • Improve the content model
  • rebuild the sites onto the GovCMS 8/9 SaaS platform
APSC logo



  • Drupal 7 to 9 upgrade
  • Convivial for GovCMS
  • User experience design
  • Web development

The solution

To handle the build of the four sites, we created a cost-effective efficient solution. We created a white-label site using our starter site Convivial for GovCMS. Convivial for GovCMS is a distribution created by Morpht which provides feature rich components right out-of-the-box.

The built the white-label site to carry standardised content types and functionality commonly used across all the four sites. With this base site in play, we saved time and effort when creating each of the four sites.

APSC sites on devices

Re-architecting the content model

Morpht met the project challenge by ensuring that the APSC Product Owner was involved every step of the way. With a deadline that all websites needed to be ready for APSC stakeholders by 30 March 2021, Morpht established the project by immediately diving in with Discovery sessions for each of the websites.

Working with this strategy, Morpht could:

  • Identify the commonalities between each website which was used to inform the white label starter-kit.
  • Inspect the content model and suggest improvements/enhancements which were factored into the DNA of each project.
  • Develop design alignment recommendations and work with APSC to ensure that this would meet stakeholder requirements.
APSC four different websites on devices

Improved user experience

On a mission to improve the user experience, we 

  • Improved the discoverability and user flow through the content
  • Delivered different navigation models
  • Created a few new content types to surface information across different page types
  • Pooled together disparate publications and tools into a resource library categorised by audience group, topics and year.
APSC user experience

Integrated team work

From the start, we had a lot to coordinate. Four websites with different needs - some needing content model improvements, others needing IA improvements, and some needing minor design improvements while others a complete redesign.

Morpht established an integrated team of key Morpht staff (Project manager, developers, UX Designer) and key APSC staff (Product Owner, UX Designer, Site administrator ). We facilitated the key communication points through direct access to our project management tool to maintain transparent communication streams between all members of the integrated team. 

Fostering a team spirit, clearly articulated shared project goals, facilitated an open and friendly work space which supported the development of a new relationship we’re proud of.

APSC integrated teamwork

The GovCMS advantage

GovCMS SaaS utilising Convivial for GovCMS provides an incredibly firm base to build a Departmental website on. The SaaS platform provides a solid and secure framework for the website, which is managed by a dedicated and skilled team on your behalf. Convivial for GovCMS sits on top of the base CMS install. With thousands of dedicated hours invested into this framework, Convivial provides well considered, highly flexible tools that enable an incredibly quick start-up for any website. Within we can establish 3 weeks content types with components that provide a multitude of options to build out feature rich and flexible content. Using this approach frees up key staff to focus on the important elements of content and communications delivery.

APSC GovCMS advantage

Time is of the essence

With this project, Convivial for GovCMS proved that Morpht could deliver value and deliver early. We were able to deliver all four websites a month ahead of schedule, providing much needed time for the APSC to work with key stakeholders to improve content and prepare for launch.

By trusting the APSC team’s established communication framework with their internal stakeholders, Morpht was able to delegate the responsibility of communicating with the complex and varied departmental units and focus on the development works. Having a structured weekly meeting space ensured that everyone on the team was aware of requirements, modifications, blockers and risks. Treating all contributors as part of a team that shared responsibility facilitated an agile team that delivered on the project promises.

APSC site on tablet

The outcome

Within 6 months Morpht produced all 4 sites for the APSC. Three have launched and the fourth one is not far behind. Morpht delivered the project 30 days early, as a result providing much needed time for the APSC to work on perfecting content on the sites prior to launch. 

Convivial for GovCMS provided the framework needed to deliver the project on time, within budget and adding more value than expected. The project fostered a great working relationship which opened the door for further collaboration with the APSC on new projects for the rest of 2021.

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