Dealing with Covid-19 on the digital frontline

As COVID-19 spread throughout the United States, the Governor of Florida issued a “Shelter in Place” order for the state, directing residents to the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FL DEM) website at as a single source of information.

The order caused the site traffic to double overnight. The influx on the existing on-premise infrastructure could not withstand causing latency and crashes. FL DEM needed a cloud-based solution fast, escalating the issue all the way to the governor’s office.

A Cloud-first strategy to facilitate a communicative, digital ecosystem for all residents

The Optimizely Digital Experience Platform was the cloud-first solution FL DEM needed, providing high availability and performance, easy connectivity with other cloud services and existing systems, and the ability to manage drastic changes in traffic. Optimizely, along with FL DEM’s web partners Blend Interactive and AAJ Computer Services, Inc dba OZ, were able to communicate the need for a Digital Experience Platform and execute an agreement in less than three days proving, together, the collaborative team could support their needs from an IT, security, and reliability perspective.

The implementation of Content Cloud highlights the benefit of cloud-based vs an instance-bound subscription license, with the need expanding beyond COVID-19, preparing them for the spikes in traffic that occur throughout hurricane season as well. The Cloud infrastructure, built on Microsoft Azure, means the site isn't prone to downtime, especially during critical periods.

There were a lot of moving parts to work within a short amount of time, balancing procurement, partnership, and implementation processes. Working as a cohesive team enabled agility and efficiently, with a common goal of keeping the site up as a critical resource for Florida residents. For this project, the goal was supporting the customer and working with them to execute and have their environment provisioned in less than 24 hours from receiving an executed contract.

Because of Blend's expansive experience working with Optimizely, they were able to help articulate the value of DXP and collaborate with the client's internal development and IT teams for a seamless transition to the platform.