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Life as a Project Manager

04 Dec 13:00 by Emma Whitting

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It’s strange to think that just a few months ago, on a Friday afternoon (beers in hand,) we all sat down with our digital agency to plan the HN website re-design. It’s been a great journey, and we’ve certainly learned a lot from each stage of the project. Here’s how the story goes…

Starting with a brief

In an ever changing market place it was fundamental to develop our brand whilst remaining true to our identity. Over the past 9 years at Henry Nicholas, we’ve grown in numbers, matured in style and expanded our offering – something we were keen for our website to reflect. We wanted to take elements of our old, quirky “feel at home” brand and evolve to a newer, slicker site. Having a bold colour palette, strong company images and a clear navigation also needed to be a big part of the design brief.

As well as a great design, a clear client and candidate user journey was another main objective in the brief. We want our visitors to navigate easily and to find relevant content.

None of this was easy and it’s involved multiple strategy meetings, brainstorm sessions and plenty of cups of coffee…

What were the objectives?

So what other objectives came out of the brief? As we launched into competitor analysis, mapping out the wireframe and delivering a design brief to the digital agency working with us, we collectively agreed on some other principle objectives:

  • Putting mobile first; 60% of people now use their mobile to apply for a job

  • Showcasing the best content; from industry news, marketing insights, client interviews to candidate advice – what do we share and why?

  • Being client AND candidate focused. Because we’re all about placing talent at the heart of business!

  • To create an efficient candidate registration process so that candidates can access jobs quicker and update their profile regularly

  • Standing out from the crowd – we know at Henry Nicholas, we’re a unique bunch of individuals, and we want our new website to say the same.

We love a challenge!

What were the challenges we came up against? Aside from the time spent creating the site map and wireframe, briefing in a design team, developing new and improved website copy and testing across mobile and web, the big hurdle came when due to unforeseen circumstances we had to change content agencies and source an alternative method of moving forward with our content.

Suddenly, being the client seemed all the more challenging. The empathy of working to deadlines became real. Do we use a freelancer? Is an agency more beneficial? And what about optimising for SEO? Is this all within our budget? After a couple of challenging weeks with tough decisions made, things seemed to fall into place. We were lucky enough to start working with a great content agency who did a fab job and we’re very happy with the results! Phew!

So, what have we achieved?

Now the new website’s live, we’ve been able to take some time out to reflect on what we’ve achieved. Of course, big high five’s to the project team who have taken plenty of time out to focus on the website project. Although we’re super happy with the website and its offerings (and we’re chuffed to have received some great feedback), we see this as just the beginning!

And what’s next?

Next up for us, is looking at our content strategy and how we can continue to improve the content we’re sharing to candidates and clients so you’re getting the best bits. We’ll be continuing to update and add to the website and there’s lots more exciting things to come. Go on, have a look around! We’d love to hear your thoughts.

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