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Client Association of Certified Fraud Examiners
What We Do Design & Content, Web Development

Standardizing and connecting a profession


Composed of 194 chapters across 180 countries, the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) is a leading organization in a profession fighting against occupational fraud. They support fraud examiners by bolstering the discipline and providing a professional community to examiners, risk managers, compliance analysts, and the like.

In just the last decade, the ACFE has grown faster outside the United States than inside, with 40% of new members being international. The distribution of membership is becoming more diverse across age, job functions, industries, and represented countries.

With a growing membership, the ACFE came to Mighty Citizen seeking ways their website could better showcase their credentials, offerings, and other content while providing professional-level customer service through design and function.

Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) Certification

The ACFE’s members exist in two categories: Associate members, which include student and educator types, and CFE members who have achieved their Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) credential, which the association offers. CFEs make up the majority of the ACFE’s membership, although non-credentialed members (associate members) join for access to the association’s publications and other resources and benefits.

The CFE credential is designed for individuals who have a background in investigating and identifying fraud in a variety of settings, including businesses, government, and nonprofit organizations. To sit for the exam, candidates must have two years of relevant work experience and be an associate member of the ACFE.

Optimized Collaboration

Working in partnership with the ACFE’s team, we started our Discovery process to uncover the specific issues the organization was having. Primarily, the ACFE is focused on growth, which highlights two truths. One is that in order to grow, they needed to serve their members (and serve them well). The other is that as the ACFE’s audiences become more diverse, so must their messaging.

As it was, the ACFE’s website did very little to differentiate between audiences. While you’ll never be able to prioritize your audiences equally, you can structure your website to be more intuitive for the intended audience. Think about all of the audiences the ACFE has to consider: there are CFEs, associate members, students, educators, law enforcement, and corporate alliance members, in addition to other partners, stakeholders, and more. Then, consider how many members exist outside of the United States and the language or content needs that are created. There are over 120 combinations of pricing for tiers of dues depending on where you’re located!

After learning about the ACFE’s pain points and opportunities, we set out to create an improved website user experience that meets industry best practices and reflects the ACFE’s commitment to a personalized, customer-centric approach. We wanted to update the organization’s visual design and make it scalable for future content so the entire look and feel is refreshed. We also wanted to support the ACFE’s key goals, like growing and maintaining membership, converting associate members to CFEs, and promoting their products and training.

A Content-First Approach

Based on the different audiences we’re trying to reach, we recommended a content-first approach. At the same time we were developing the website wireframes (or how each page should be structured), we were considering the content that would go along with it.

We audited the ACFE’s existing content to identify where it would serve its intended audience best on the website. Because each type of page has a specific purpose, we developed content guides as standards for the organization. Content guides define the strategy for each page layout from the homepage to every subpage. We developed a guide for each page type or layout to outline the goal of the page, desired actions, what content should be included and what priority that content takes.

E-Commerce Functionality

The ACFE has a significant amount of products in their resources library, including the CFE credential. We made four main changes to the ACFE’s e-commerce functionality:

  1. Filtered search: We enhanced how users find relevant products and events, creating a filterable search based on attributes we discovered were important to them through our research (for example, the amount of Continuing Professional Education [CPE] you receive, or the type, format, course level, etc.).

  2. Product pages: We redesigned the ACFE’s product pages to highlight the information most important to their customers’ decision-making and structured them to encourage the customer to add the product to their cart.

  3. Cart checkout sequence: Our team built a new transactional user flow to modernize the interactions and reduce friction.

  4. Member account: We created a My Learning & Resources section in the member account that allows users to more easily find and access both their purchased and free products.

Our team made fundamental decisions on the flow of the cart and experience, considering components like confirmation pages, error messages, modality, and more. The result is e-commerce functionality on the ACFE’s website with beautiful design and function.

Integration: Member Dashboards

We fundamentally changed the way the ACFE’s site is set up. We created a new operational system and communicated openly and transparently with their team every step of the way, which greatly benefitted our partnership on this project. Now, the ACFE’s new website integrates with their membership management system for information.

Designing for the Long Haul

One of the major pieces of this project was the idea of creating reusable components in a way that they can serve one purpose on one page but a different one on another without having to be recreated or rebuilt. Our long-term mindset was at the foundation of this project, starting at the content guide phase that we did in tandem with the wireframes. Together with the ACFE team, we developed beautiful pages and subpages that are consistent with the brand and effective for their intended audiences.

We can’t emphasize enough how much our partnership with the ACFE’s team affected the outcome of this project. Planning and collaboration between our teams were strong from the beginning, resulting in a seamless transition. Because of our collaboration with the ACFE and a high level of documentation on both sides, we utilized strengths from both teams to ensure that no pieces fell through the cracks.

Thinking of a Project?

When we partner with an organization, it’s a custom collaboration every time. From full-fledged marketing departments to the one-person show, we form a connection with our clients that brings out the best of both of us. Our experts are suited to be a true partner that helps your organization with its specific challenges. If you have a project in mind or are just curious about a potential partnership with Mighty Citizen, drop us a line—we’d love to chat.

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