As you may have already noticed our new website went live over the weekend. While there is still plenty of work to do, even in its current “beta” state it is still better than its predecessor, as good as that was at one point. In any case the plan is now to continuously improve the website for the benefit of our members and the wider Constructing Excellence Movement.
The website is built on the WordPress platform which is the most widely used content management system in the world. Therefore it is constantly updated to keep up with modern standards such as responsiveness to, and is customisable in almost any way imaginable. Many of our Clubs already use the hosted version of this platform which makes it an even better fit.
As well the main site at constructingexcellence.org.uk we can have as many sub-sites as we want that all share the benefits of the same administrative back end. At launch we will have:
We’ve still got a fair amount of work to do to get these finished off, but if you are a Club in need of a new website please get in touch so we can get that in the queue
The building blocks of the site are as follows
- News and Blog posts – We will be looking to feature a lot of guest blogs from members and others within the movement, so don’t be surprised if I press gang you into writing something for us soon. If you’ve got an idea for a blog please get in touch.
- Resources – This includes publications, toolkits, case studies. At the moment we are adding our key documents online. The old website is available as an archive here for the moment while we transfer the important stuff over. We will then have a copy of the old site which we can refer to internally. The process of separating the wheat from the chaff on the old website is quite daunting though, so if there is a classic piece of content you can find by searching the new site please let me know.
- Organisations – every organisation within the movement will have its own profile, e.g. our Regional Centres, Clubs and Members. At the moment this are just stub entries. We”ll be asking the organisations to help us update these soon, but feel free to get in touch sooner if you want to add more detail to yours.
The rest of the site is built up by pulling in data from these various content types. For example theme group pages, such as the BIM page, act as a hub for all the different content (blogs, resources, events, links) we have on that theme. These sections are still very much under development, but I hope they still give an illustration in their current state.
The key principles we have followed are:
- Mirroring the fresh look in the annual review where possible.
- A minimalist style, influenced by the excellent bbc.co.uk and gov.uk design principles.
There is still a lot to finesse particularly with the sub-sites, as we have concentrated on getting the structure and content right first.
Apart from migrating the old content to the new website, here are some of the areas we are looking at developing soon:
- Event booking, possibly through integration with EventBrite
- Enhancing member profiles to showcase their case studies etc
- Member only content. The old member log-ins will not be redundant while we introduce a new system for restricting content to members. I’d be interested in feedback from members on what content you think should be restricted to members. There is a balance to be struck between wanting to influence as much of the industry as possible while also providing added value for paying members.
- Improving the search functionality
Thanks for reading. If you have any feedback or suggestions please email me or use the contact form below