New Work - BC Hydro's Power Smart for School's platform brings conservation into the classroom.

September 20, 2017

BC Hydro has become a leading sustainable energy company, producing and delivering electricity in environmentally and socially responsible ways. In support of this mission, Engine Digital has been a long-time digital agency partner for the Power Smart for Schools online learning platform. Creating and evolving this platform has allowed BC Hydro to bring conservation curriculum into classrooms across British Columbia.

Created exclusively for educators and students, Power Smart for Schools is an online resource hub containing activities and lessons aligned to the new B.C. provincial curriculum. As the role of technology in education continues to evolve, new tools like Power Smart for Schools are beginning to supplement traditional classroom learning while helping educators alleviate some of the resource challenges that exist in their classrooms on a daily basis.

To plan the new platform, Engine Digital utilized a service design framework. This helped the BC Hydro team better understand the unique needs, behaviors, and pain points of educators, while enabling a design process that would provide the right level of engagement and value to its intended user base. Workshops were used to bring together the agency and client teams, creating a collaborative environment that capitalized on a wide knowledge base and broad subject matter expertise.

“Working closely through collaborative workshops and design sprints with our clients really helps us get to the core of the problem quickly,” stated Ryan Opina, VP Strategy at Engine Digital. “In this case, it helped form a shared understanding of the unique educator audience, and how we needed to design a solution around their specific experience.”

Central to the new Power Smart for Schools platform is a content strategy designed specifically to address the needs of educators. The content planning approach also aimed to simplify the management, maintenance, and distribution of content through clear workflows and a user-friendly content management system. In addition, Engine Digital helped BC Hydro identify new roles, responsibilities, and guidelines required to support the new platform.

The design of the new Power Smart for Schools is a complete departure from its FirstWave predecessor, also created by Engine Digital. The new platform extends existing elements of the BC Hydro brand, positioning Power Smart for Schools as fresh, accessible and interesting for a newer, broader audience that might otherwise have less interaction with the brand.

For B.C. educators, the new Power Smart for Schools is live and ready for use. Its core feature set is built around an exploration model, surfacing content, related lessons, and activities through categorization. Teachers can visit and create an account online at

About BC Hydro

BC Hydro is a government-run electric utility company serving 1.8 million customers, and generating over $5 billion in annual revenue for the province. Through its focus on clear customer communication and a shift towards a self-serve model, BC Hydro continues to engage Engine Digital on an extensive list of digital initiatives, and build upon a strong client agency partnership that began in 2008. For more information, visit:

About Engine Digital

Engine Digital is a New York City and Vancouver based digital consultancy, product design, and engineering studio. The agency’s mission is to help ambitious organizations invent their future through better customer experiences that span web, mobile, and emerging digital channels. Founded in 2002, Engine Digital is a trusted partner to some of the world’s most recognized brands including Mastercard, HP, Google, adidas, Lululemon, and the NBA. For more information, visit:

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