NHS Website Newcastle Gateshead Alliance
Published: September 2014
NHS Website – Brief
A partnership between three statutory organisations responsible for the planning and buying of local NHS care across Newcastle and Gateshead, the Alliance required 4 new NHS websites (Alliance, Gateshead, Newcastle North East and Newcastle West). All 4 sites needed to be managed within the same content management system.
Using one main design across all 4 sites so that they were instantly recognisable as working together and being linked, we created a look and feel that was very clean, ensuring the content was easy to digest and take in. With each site having huge volumes of content and pages, planning the structure and coming up with a usable and intuitive user experience was key. We decided to create a parent page/sub page structure, which not only allowed us to create customer journey’s that were easy to follow, but is also a site structure which Google prefers and allows their robots to crawl the site more efficiently.
We used the Multi-Site capability of WordPress to create the content management system. This meant all 4 sites could easily be managed in the same back end. We customised the system so that when a page is updated on one site, the corresponding page updates automatically on the sibling sites. This prevents content being out of date and reduces the amount of administration time needed to manage the site.
Key features on the Newcastle Gateshead NHS websites:
- The site is designed and built responsively (allows effective viewing from any type of device).
- Dynamic navigation menu which operates on a parent/sub page structure, providing an easy to use navigation system.
- Multi-site content management system (CMS).
- Search bars which make finding site content simple.
- Extra features including polls and surveys.
The sites were launched on the NHS website servers without a hitch and, since then, content has been successfully managed and added to the sites. Each site is a great improvement on what was there before, both from an aesthetic and functional point of view, ensuring NHS customers receive a great user experience before they even set foot in a clinic.