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Web development & system integration

The International Association of Hydrogeologists (IAH) is a charitable networking organisation for groundwater professionals. They asked us to plan, design and build a brand new website that would meet their needs for years to come.

"Following the launch of the new website, we immediately received positive messages from our members, boosting confidence and future commitment to associated tasks." quote Kellie Nicholson - International Secretariat Administrator The International Association of Hydrogeologists

A new content management system makes it quick and easy to manage and maintain the new website.


New admin functionality makes setting up sub-sites easier, saving time and ensuring consistency across all sites.


The updated design clearly reflects their brand and values.


An integrated eCommerce application provides an easy and secure way for members to join the charity.

Customer challenges

IAH’s website design was outdated and had been built in an old custom content management system (CMS). It was clunky to use and made managing and maintaining the website difficult and time-consuming.

This was particularly challenging as they also had to manage a number of sub-sites, which were also not consistent with the look and feel of the main site.

The brief

IAH were looking for a new website that would meet their needs now and for years to come.

The key criteria for the new site was flexibility – they needed a solution that could meet a variety of current needs, plus have the ability to adapt to meet any future requirements. They also wanted the website to be easy to manage and maintain.

IAH also had a number of sub-sites for their national chapters, commissions and networks to consider. They needed a solution that would make it easy for them to set up and maintain new sites, instead of each group having to build their own. Being an international organisation, IAH was also keen to appeal to non-native English speakers using images, clear design and icons as well as offering multiple languages for the user to browse in.

The solution

Website development

The Oxford-based Alberon development team designed and built an engaging new website that reflects the charity’s brand and clearly delivers their core messages. The site’s improved layout allows the IAH to highlight news and events much more effectively, while improved navigation means visitors can quickly find what they need, providing a more positive user experience.

Customised content management system

The website was built using technology that allows it to be easily adapted. The new Content Management System (CMS) – WordPress – makes it easy to manage and maintain. The WordPress Multisite feature allows them to set up their sub-sites through a single WordPress installation. This not only saves time, but also creates consistency across the sites.

eCommerce websites & payments

Alberon integrated a bespoke membership management system with WordPress, taking payments through WorldPay and PayPal, so members can sign up online easily and securely.

All member data is managed through the WordPress admin system, allowing the membership administrator to send annual invoices for membership fees (by email and post), send reminders to members, record money received from the national chapters, and produce various reports including estimated annual income.

System integration

One integral part of the project involved developing a brand new application to hold IAH’s member and supporter data. As well as providing data protection, fulfilling IAH’s legal obligations, the application also helps the association to communicate with its communities more effectively.

IAH keep their members updated with current news and events via alert messages for their scientific journal and non-members via their email newsletter. As part of the refresh, Alberon recommended using Campaign Monitor to send alerts and newsletters.

The mailing lists are automatically synchronised with the member’s database on the website, ensuring their contact lists are kept up-to-date. If a member unsubscribes in Campaign Monitor, their profile on the website is also updated to reflect this.

The events list from the website is also automatically uploaded to Campaign Monitor to be displayed as part of the newsletter. This ensures the information remains current, and saves time when maintaining the site.

The benefits

IAH now has a new website that clearly reflects what they offer both as a charity and a professional association. The updated content management system saves them time in administering the system, and the multisite feature means new sub-sites can be set up more easily, and ensures consistency. The eCommerce system provides members with a quick and secure way to join the charity, and synchronising the newsletter data with the website, means the data is always current and correct.

Tim Ault

Business Development Director
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