CS Intelligence: Nasdaq Corporate Solutions’ Open-Source Webhosting Ensures Innovation And Best Practice
IR websites today are as integral to a comprehensive investor communication and disclosure program as an earnings release. Investors and analysts have come to expect a company’s web presence to be easily accessible, up to date and comprehensive, and they would regard any public company lacking a professional IR website as not worth an investment of time or money.
So when Simon Ball, Nasdaq Corporate Solutions’ global head of digital media services, was planning the integration of two proprietary legacy systems for hosting client websites, he viewed a next-generation website offering as an opportunity not only to achieve consistency and efficiency, but also to build a web-hosting environment that could offer clients the latest new features and best practices. Ball and his team implemented the latest version of the Drupal 8 open-source solution with Acquia as the cloud-based management layer to administer and host thousands of websites.
Innovation in the open-source community allows Nasdaq to rapidly embrace new features that benefit the exchange’s 3,000 webhosting clients around the globe, Ball notes, pointing to a new media library component that allows streamlined management of different media as one example. Drupal’s modular architecture translates into great flexibility for adding new functionality. For IROs, that means that critical must-have characteristics are an integral part of the Nasdaq Corporate Solutions platform. For example, “mobile is a first-class citizen,” Ball says, pointing out that there is no separate process for administering content for mobile environments, so any new IR content is automatically promulgated across a multi-platform architecture.
The latest security features available are built into the platform “from the ground up,” Ball adds. While universal security features such as encryption, file transfer, firewalls and protection against denial-of-service attacks are an integral part of the platform, enhanced features particularly adapted to the needs of IR websites are also part of the mix, he says. For instance, access rights management is ‘very granular, down to the individual level, determining who can see what content’, enabling IROs to stage sensitive information before it goes public.
With the cloud-based management layer, Nasdaq Corporate Solutions-hosted client IR sites are extremely scalable; a surge of investor queries following a major announcement, for example, doesn’t impact investors’ access or the corporate website. The platform’s simple content management, reliability and security make it easy for IROs to administer the site and run updates or take a hybrid approach with support from Nasdaq’s digital services team.
Other areas considered IR best practice include multi-language support and accessibility features such as descriptive alt text for images or enhanced font size capability, search engine optimization and search functionality within your IR website, ensuring investors leave with an efficient and intuitive experience – as well as a favorable impression of a professional IR website.
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