The University of Washingtonā€™s School of Nursing needed an update to their web site to match with the broader brand of the University and more importantly make information for external audiences easier to find and use. We completed a full analysis of site content, usability, and design standards and used what we learned to develop a replacement site and create content for its main user-facing areas.

UW Nursing's web site from 2009

In the time since the existing web site for the School of Nursing was launched in 2009, the University of Washington at large undertook a several-million-dollar visual refresh for the entire brand. Security, usability, and technology standards improved. Large numbers of disassociated content editors made it difficult for site users to find what they needed in a haystack of words.

UW Nursing's web site from 2009

Stakeholder research

Our collaborative and inclusive philosophy sets us apart. As part of our discovery process, we employed that philosophy to ease information gathering and gain buy-in from the many stakeholders whose interests were at times diametrically opposed.

We conducted user focus groups, surveys, and and on-site analytics and heat-mapping to determine how real users feel about and use the web site.

D2 was quick, helpful, and on-budget. I'm definitely recommending them to other schools and departments here at the University!

Staishy SeimDirector of PR

Information architecture

About 60% of the content on the existing site focused on internal users who would be better served by an intranet solution. We found much of the remaining content to be out-of-date and categorized the rest into an information architecture of functional domains: academics, student life, faculty information, and research information.

We created structured content types to allow cross-references and single points of truth, helping the multiple editors keep the content on the site consistent and up-to-date through the future.

Graphic design

To reach its enrollment, community engagement, and research goals, the School of Nursing needed to be much more succinct in its communication. A picture is worth a thousand words, and we made it clear in the design process that the visual aspect can convey a lot more than just facts in a much more efficient way. To wit, we found about a dozen key landing pages that would receive some custom treatment. Our modular approach to development meant we could still allow editors to modify even highly customized pages safely.