We’ve got a new corporate website. We hope you noticed, and we hope you find it easy to use.
(this newsroom blog will soon change to match it, but we figured it could come after the main event)
Its much more than just an update with the new brand. Lots of it has been re-written – we’re trying to take out the jargon and use plain English. The font is bigger, and the pages less cluttered. You should be able to find what you’re looking for more easily.
Creating a new website is a quite a big undertaking. We began with mapping out three key types of website users and the different ways they would want to use this website.
- Customers looking for information related to their home, neighbourhood, or our services
- Job seekers, looking for information related to vacancies, what its like to work with us, and how to apply
- Organisations, looking for information about Thames Valley Housing, what we do, and how and where we work
- And then we set about designing the site and the navigation around meeting those needs.
The customer section was clearly going to be a significant one – there are over 14,000 customers. “Card sorting workshops” were held with customers to better understand how they grouped themes and issues. The insights we gained were really useful in helping with designing how you move around the site. We wanted to make sure that our ‘curse of knowledge’ – knowing how TVH works internally – didn’t get in the way of presenting the information to people who don’t have a copy of our organisation chart to hand.
Although we’ve gone live with the site today, this is just the beginning of the journey, not the end. We’ll be building on it over the coming months. We’ll be updating this “newsroom” section, blogging, and adding more information about new homes being built. A major update to “MyTVH” is coming in early 2014. This is where customers can log in and access their account and check on progress of repair requests and so on.
In case you’re interested in the technology, we’re fans of open source software and have built the site using WordPress. And we’re using Amazon Web Services for hosting. The awesome team at DXW built it for us, and here at TVH Towers, our IT and Communications Teams are working together on taking it forward.
Please use this feedback form to let us know if you spot any typos, or find things that don’t work.