The new logo, developed by Leo Burnett Canada, shows the Ontario Association of Architects as a place to bridge communities. The central circle, which doubles as an O for “Ontario,” is representative of the community and inclusivity of the membership. The outer pieces framing this circle are representative of the architect’s space, and create two As—a nod to “Association” and the two member types: architects and architectural technologists (Lic.Tech.OAA).
OAA has re-envisioned its decade-old site to meet accessibility standards, provide clear information for both members and the public, improve transparency, and offer responsive design for tablets and phones.
“We know our website is our digital headquarters. It’s a space that is used by members to access an important body of knowledge as well as to build community, and it’s a place for the public to find information or gain a better understanding of this profession, its role, and the uniquely trained and skilled individuals who are part of it,” says OAA President and architect, Kathleen Kurtin.
The new site’s design principles, style, and visual language were developed by Sputnik, with goals of being timeless, minimalist, clear, consistent, and organized. “It has been an incredible journey and an extremely rewarding experience working together with the OAA in the creation of their new website,” says Sputnik’s owner, David Sacha. “Sputnik’s mission was to create an online presence that would better reflect the current vision and offerings of the OAA, while still delivering all the tools needed to support and engage the architectural community in Ontario. The result is one of collaboration and ingenuity that saw several creative disciplines working together to craft and engineer an artistic, engaging, and forward-thinking website.”
Enginess’ Director of Digital Strategy, Simone Abel, calls the new website “an impressive showpiece of a content- and user-first approach to digital experience design.” “The OAA now has a modern CMS back-end, new tools to manage, categorize, and search high volumes of content, and new capabilities to drive engagement, transparency, and feedback. Most notable is the re-organization of the public versus member experience, allowing for targeted growth and expansion of features, content, and messaging to each audience,” she explains. “The possibilities for new integrations, custom features, and growth are endless. We are very proud of this achievement and offer our sincere thanks to the many key staff who worked with us tirelessly to bring this project successfully to life.”
The new website developed on Advantage CSP leverages the platform’s multi-experience capabilities, which powers two separate, but connected, domains for public and member audiences. The OAA’s mission of protecting and serving the public interest is made explicitly clear, allowing users to quickly learn about the architecture profession and the OAA’s regulatory role, or gain more information about illegal practice, complaints and discipline processes, or registrar investigations.
Members of the public can find out how to become an Architect or Licensed Technologist OAA, with the website showing the paths to licensure for students and interns within Ontario, as well as for those currently studying or practising outside the province. The website also includes a directory that allows the public to search through the membership and those who hold status with the OAA. This increases transparency for the profession as it will connect the regulator’s discipline decisions to members and practices.
The OAA Website offers access to the Practice Advisory Knowledge Base—a digital library of resources, articles, tools, documents, and publications, searchable through key words, filters, and tags. The site also includes constantly updated information related to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, along with portals for resources related to carbon stability and sustainable design, as well as a database of the OAA’s government relations outreach.
For more, visit www.oaa.on.ca.