A nimble, powerful and fully accessible website for Creative Access, a leading social enterprise enabling people from communities under-represented in the creative industries to access careers, progress and reach leadership.
Diversity and inclusion awareness is on a steep rise with more organisations looking to incorporate it as a standard part of their policies and practices. Enter Creative Access, a social enterprise that enables candidates from under-represented backgrounds find paid internships and roles in the creative sector and provides career support to ensure they thrive. Creative Access also educates and trains organisations on how to become more inclusive and recruit and retain diverse talent. To celebrate its 10th anniversary, Creative Access had re-branded and wanted a new website to reflect the new branding and also to handle the significant increase in enquiries and interest from candidates and employers it was experiencing. The website needed to reflect the creativity of the sector Creative Access operates in and be appealing to the young, creative talent but also to corporate employer partners. Full accessibility and ease of navigation was critical, given the audiences Creative Access serves.
We brought in our partners at Brand Ethos and Pilao to help with content strategy, SEO and design. Together we formed a team of specialists that reinvented their digital ecosystem. The project did not start and end with just a website. We delivered on the usual discovery, design and development but we also guided them through content auditing, migration planning, post launch lead conversion, analytics and rigorous quality assurance.
The website was in need of an overhaul. Over the years, it increasingly suffered from downtime, limited performance and slow loading times. Navigation was difficult and user experience was choppy as a result of pages tacked on to add new content without scalable site architecture in place. We had to turn things around at warp speed and deliver a sturdy website, able to withstand millions of views a year with flexibility and agility built in to accommodate rapid growth.
The website now scores in the 99th percentile on Google PageSpeed Insights.
The new website was deployed in the space of three months and built on a solid framework that allowed for high volumes and sudden spikes in traffic. It is at optimal performance and hosted on its own high frequency virtual private server to ensure it does not suffer downtime. We achieved WCAG 2.1 AA accessibility standards and underwent several layers of testing including with people who face disabilities. We ensured seamless integration with the organisation’s job board to allow user to easily flow from job opportunities to resources and case studies. Creative Access received positive feedback on the new site from both candidates and employers and the flexibility of the site enables the team to change content and banners to better support their recruitment roles and programmes.
This project was critical for our future growth and a large and complex undertaking for an organisation of our size. Hertech were a brilliant partner from the start. They really understood our challenges and how to maximise the potential of our site and futureproof it. The team was extremely responsive, supportive and went above and beyond to deliver our new site. We were also impressed with their creativity – taking our new branding and bringing it to life in a really engaging and accessible way. Our team had never delivered a website before and they provided us with incredibly clear and easy guidance and helpful videos to navigate the CMS. For an organisation like ours focused on diversity and inclusion, it was also refreshing to work with a female-led agency and diverse team, who are in a minority in the web development sector. We would definitely work with Hertech again.