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Case study brief: Website design and development for the LLR Academy

LLR Academy is a social care support company, offering support to clients such as Leicestershire County Council and the NHS in health and wellbeing, inclusion, system development and quality improvement services. The website was required as a resource to train frontline NHS staff with procedural training. With COVID-19 emphasising the importance of procedural training within the NHS, LLR needed a quick turnaround on the website.

HeX were recommended to fulfil the needs of LLR through a direct recommendation on social media. Our extensive experience in accessible development was also a factor as to us getting chosen to deliver the project. In line with the Public Sector Accessibility Legislation this needed to be accessible.. The website was to be HeX’s first build remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic, so a reliance on efficient and good communication was essential throughout the project.

HeX's agile working and flexibility to meet tight deadlines made this case study unique

The website design and development processes were delivered in iterative phases, following HeX’s Agile working practices.

The project was delivered over a few weeks, with meetings, deliverables and feedback planned into a strict project timeline.

The website designs were made in accordance with the brand guidelines supplied by LLR Academy.

The website was developed in WordPress, utilising Gutenberg blocks to ensure the website was easy to use for content editors.

The site was reviewed throughout the build via screen sharing on Zoom, with HeX taking on feedback from LLR throughout.

an orange hexagon with the accessibility symbol inside

Web development activities delivered

Providing website designs to meet brand guidelines

the LLR home page shown as a full page, as a mobile phone user, and a striking green call-to-action box

LLR Academy required their new website to reflect the company’s brand guidelines perfectly. The site needed to be delivered quickly to ensure the website would be most effective during the COVID-19 pandemic. Alongside ensuring the website met strict turnaround times, it needed to be designed with accessibility in mind. LLR were conscious of the Public Sector Accessibility Regulations and the moral issue of having an inaccessible website. 

HeX was more than willing to adhere to the strict time frame, ensuring that each phase was project managed and LLR Academy were given clear deliverables. HeX delivered the design phase of the build in iterative phases, allowing the client to review the design at stages to ensure they were happy with what was being created.  These feedback meetings were implemented into the project plan, ensuring that LLR had opportunity to deliver feedback, and HeX had time to bring that feedback into the build

Utilising their guidelines, their signature blue and green colours were implemented into the designs, ensuring it maintained a professional and sleek appearance. The designs were delivered digitally and explained through planned Zoom call meetings, demonstrating our ability to communicate effectively wherever our client is based. Once the designs were signed off by the top level executives at LLR Academy, the site moved to the development phase. 

Working within strict turnaround times to develop a website 

This website was built to help LLR support NHS organisations with training during a very difficult time. The site offered transformational and growth in the development of leadership and quality improvement within medical and care teams. This website would be a vital resource to frontline care teams during an incredibly intense period.

We needed to ensure that the site was created in a way that would allow the user to access information quickly, regardless of their input method or device being used.

We understood that the timeframe was exceptionally small, but confident in our Agile working and project management skills. Working in Agile meant efficient working and adaptability throughout. 

The team at HeX work collaboratively, ensuring that projects like LLR can be completed within the strict turnaround times. Understanding the requirements of the build was the first step of managing the project, doing this meant we were able to set out a project plan for LLR, giving them clarity on what was to be delivered. The next phase was the designing of the site, ensuring that it met the requirements that LLR had given us. 

Our detailed designs provide guidance for developers on where elements are to be placed and what these features will look like when actioned by a user.

This collaborative approach to design ensures that developers are able to move on to the development phase armed with information that will make the process much more efficient. Once built, our approach moves to testing, ensuring the site operates effectively and elements are placed in accordance to the designs. 

Despite working remotely due to COVID-19, HeX had virtual infrastructure that allowed teams to collaborate on the project without needing to meet up. Our collaborative process ensured the quickest turnaround time possible.

Developing an easy to use and responsive website in WordPress

The website for LLR Academy was built in WordPress, utilising the Gutenberg block feature. Gutenberg blocks were introduced with WordPress Version 5 at the end of 2018, blocks make manipulating content on the back end of the site easier. It was our goal to allow LLR to implement content with as few barriers as possible.

Whilst Gutenberg comes with a variety of pre-set blocks, HeX developers were able to develop custom blocks that would allow greater customisation of the site. HeX has had significant experience in working with WordPress builds for clients such as Together, the mental health charity and AKA Case Management. 

a screen shot of a page from the LLR website, showing clear taxonomy and striking branding

Using a custom developed HeX theme in the build meant that the entire site could be adapted and edited by LLR in the future without the need of further development. LLR Academy trusted HeX’s recommendation to work with WordPress, which now has a market share of 35% of all websites on the Internet. 

Features implemented into the design, such as a video player on the home page were added into the development. The benefit of using Gutenberg blocks allows the back-end editing area of the website to replicate what the front end will look like once published. This makes it easier and more efficient for LLR content editors to implement content, without having to keep checking how it looks on the front end of the website. 

Providing online support and remote training to content editors

HeX delivered a site in the given timeframe that fit their branding and provided a resource for clients of LLR Academy.

a male using a laptop, sat next to a female who is taking notes

Upon handover of the site, LLR Academy content editors were given a detailed overview of how to add, edit, and remove content from the site using the Gutenberg editor and custom blocks that had been implemented. This was delivered remotely via video call. 

During the content implementation phase, HeX was on standby to deliver support to content editors. HeX were available throughout the day to provide solutions to issues that the team may have been having, with the availability to enter a video call and help the team solve any content implementation questions. 

We’re proud to have delivered the project in a timely fashion for LLR, which will go towards ensuring teams in critical care environment have easy access to training on critical procedures and techniques.

This was HeX’s first full scale build in the COVID-19 pandemic, so ensuring we maintained communication was vital to the success given the quick turnaround time for the website. LLR Academy had a sleek and professional site that allowed them to publish the information that would benefit critical care teams across the NHS and local authority during the Coronavirus pandemic. 

If you want to hear more about how we build with easy to edit custom blocks, get in touch and we’ll walk you through some of our development build environments.

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