Crane Aerospace & Electronics

Lifting off with a custom Drupal Build

Crane Aerospace & Electronics manufactures a wide range of critical components used in airplanes, spacecraft, satellites, microwave and defense systems. Their website was out of date, not built for mobile devices, and lacked a content management system (CMS), making content updates time consuming and difficult. 

The Crane team knew they needed a new website that could be a central sales and marketing tool to provide information about Crane A&E news, brands, and products for employees, customers, and suppliers—all in a cohesive experience.
 

A Fresh Start

We began with a scoping phase, and being a conglomerate with multiple major business units, there were many stakeholder needs to consider. Our team had a chance to meet with each major business unit and discuss their section of the new website in detail.

Their new website is powered by Drupal 8 CMS, providing a major improvement in terms of site performance along with an easy to maintain admin interface for the Crane internal team.

In addition to revamping the information architecture for the main Crane Aerospace website and product catalog, we were able to consolidate two additional business units (that ran on their own domains) into the new structure. A significant, manual content migration was completed to get everything into its new home.
 

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Custom Features

Over the years, there had been many custom-built webforms, and specific lookup features built onto the old site. Many of these were improved using the Drupal CMS infrastructure that was put in place. We leveraged core Drupal features including accounts, roles, webforms, views and view filters to rebuild these custom features. Examples of this work include:

Product Finder

Crane has a very large product line across multiple divisions. To help customers quickly find the products they’re looking for, Crane needed a custom product finder which we built leveraging the existing product catalog details and Drupal views/filters to provide an ajax lookup.

Military Quotes

We created a portal for authenticated US Military users to request and view quotes. Features include gated access to a customer portal, webforms, and a searchable result set for users.

Microwave Products Finder

We created a data sheet lookup tool for the Microwave Products line. The finder contains a product type select list and additional primary and secondary feature select lists appear for some product types. Results are presented in a sortable table format, with the name and number of columns depending on the selections made. This work included the initial data import to populate the lookup tool. 

Support Web Portal

Spares Catalog

Registered users can view a catalog of commercial spare parts. This is displayed in table format with sortable column headings and a search area to aid users in filtering the data. The full or filtered list can be viewed on-screen or downloaded to Excel. 

SmartStem Product Registration

SmartStem is a wireless tire pressure sensor installed directly in the aircraft wheel and used in conjunction with a handheld reader. After purchasing a SmartStem system kit, the owner can register their system at the SmartStem Product Registration page—unlocking access to the installation documents, Letter of Authorization (LOA), and airworthiness documentation. 

Repair Capabilities Lookup

The Repair Capabilities Lookup tool helps customers find locations where products can be repaired or replaced. The lookup contains a search field with results presented in a table format. We provided this in an easy to update tool for Crane admins.

Ready for Liftoff

The site’s graphic design was provided by Crane’s internal design and marketing team. Our team built the static design into the interactive, mobile-responsive theme in Drupal—incorporating video backgrounds, custom headers, and many UX improvements. 

Crane’s new website is a fully-modernized foundation that’s much easier for their internal team to manage going forward. 

The Crane Aerospace & Electronics website successfully launched in July 2020.

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I was very impressed by the professional and methodical manner in which data was collected and the integration was done on the website. Everything felt like clockwork as it was coming together.  

Dave Dickson, Crane Aerospace & Electronics