When we met with the team at PolicyLab, a division of the Research Institute of the world-renowned Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), they had an existing website — and the seed of an idea that would take it in a new direction.
In essence, PolicyLab wanted their website to reflect their status as a growing division of one of the largest pediatric research institutes in the country, as well as to establish a better relationship among the expanding body of content that bridges their work in informing practices and policies that improve the health of children. The main challenge? Viewers currently weren’t spending enough time exploring the existing site because navigation was tricky, and they didn’t have clear and easy paths for finding the information they sought.
In seeking a solution, they were drawn to Eastern Standard for our ability to apply and explore new branding in complex digital applications. Because PolicyLab had already undergone a visual rebrand in concert with Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, their parent organization, which needed to be applied to the site, we began with a comprehensive series of application studies to the existing framework and we explored user experience and content management enhancements. In addition to some preliminary site direction that had been established, our findings guided us in adhering to CHOP branding while maintaining a unique identity for PolicyLab — the starting point for the creation of a new Drupal-based site that represented a massive front end overhaul in addition to some minor but meaningful back end adjustments.
Major navigation and information architecture corrections began with expanding the main site menu from three categories to four to align with the organization’s new strategic core areas: Adolescent Health & Well-Being; Health Care Coverage, Access, & Quality; Health Equity; and Intergenerational Family Services. We then reorganized content to make key categories like “Our Research” easier to find; created better links between related content like projects and blog posts; and redesigned related menus accordingly — all of which made the connections between various bodies of content more meaningful and intuitive. We also added tracking tools that allow the client to manage and follow the download of publications and policy tools going forward.
In the end, the upgrades embodied by the new site allow viewers from a variety of audiences to gain access in short order to the vital health information this research powerhouse provides, and allow the client to easily manage content updates as the organization moves into the future.