At the end of September 2012, CHUM (Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal) launched their new website, www.chumontreal.qc.ca, product of a collaboration between TP1 and Adviso. Our two agencies combined skills to successfully complete this redesign mandate, which required many months of intense collaboration and camaraderie.
After numerous meetings with key people from various CHUM departments, we were able to establish a priority for the tasks ahead and what efforts needed to be made in the long term. These exchanges also enabled us to become more familiar with the many properties that would be standardized to fit under the same banner.
Following an analysis of the market, as well as internal and external needs, we reoriented the site to focus on patients and hospital visitors, while at the same time underlining the organization’s tertiary and quaternary specialties. After all, we couldn’t ignore the fact that CHUM receives 432,000 patients through its doors every year!
It was necessary to reorganize and simplify the site architecture in order to quickly direct various users to the information that best addressed their needs. All of the site content was revised and a tree structure was established that could accommodate additional phases and modifications. This structure was our guiding light for the conceptual and development stages.
Once we had identified the strategic orientations and reorganized the content, there was still much work to be done before the site could take shape. Many iterations were required to determine the ideal navigation and to prioritize various aspects of the content. This stage, which included wireframes and graphic templates, could not have been completed without close collaboration between our two teams and the rigorous project management that enabled us to validate information.
Since patients and visitors represent an extremely large target group, we had to create a graphic environment that was accessible and open to all, while also offering smooth and intuitive navigation. To create a tool that could be easily used by anyone, from the very first click, we opted for distinct menu areas, sans serif fonts that optimize readability and blocks of true colour to complement it all.
The challenge was to build a visual identity with an undoubtedly clean feel that would nonetheless express a human touch, mirroring the devoted and professional staff in each hospital. Even if CHUM boasts all the latest technology, this organization is most recognized for the moral support that its members offer on a daily basis and for the lives they save.
What we wanted to illustrate with each selected image is the close relationship between patients and medical professionals.
From the beginning and throughout the process, CHUM reminded us that flexibility was the top priority. In truth, considering the number of individuals representing the business units and the strong probability of changes in strategic direction, it was crucial to create a website that CHUM could manage on its own. Luckily, Drupal was made exactly for this circumstance. Every block of content was developed with this consideration in mind and we were able to create precisely linear – almost geometric – templates which would permit the CHUM team, once they took possession of the site, to easily manage each block.
Even if Drupal allows for great flexibility, that doesn’t mean a little help isn’t also needed. Therefore, the development team worked closely with CHUM’s internal communications service throughout the integration process. The support and perseverance that each party brought to this project were truly key factors to its success.
The mandate continues to evolve and new sections of the website will be launched in the coming months. Next challenge: Human resources.
This blog post was written jointly by both teams: you can also read the full version on the Adviso blog. Prepared by: Jean-Frédéric Bergeron Poudrier, Jérome Pinel, Grey Recanati and Thomas Tixier.