At the end of summer 2017, our founder, Michael Watts, spent some time with two consultants, Richard Hills and Mark Methven, looking at what a digital platform for health, social care and general wellbeing would look like in the future.

The idea was to scope out how local authorities and their health partners can work together to harness the power and flexibility of digital tools to:

  1. achieve better life outcomes for residents
  2. improve the early intervention and prevention model
  3. support better integration
  4. achieve efficiencies in money and staffing
  5. build a better model of support around the individual to improve their wellbeing

After a couple of hours the three of them had come up with an initial 10 points. Over the a few weeks this was reshaped into 8 recommendations+.

The initial plan was to develop a document setting out the 8 points to be shared.

And that was when we got involved.

The more we reflected on it, the more we felt that a static document was not what was required to share a vision around what a digital platform should look like in the future. We felt that a vision for a new digital platform needed to be communicated via a digital platform.

We needed to design a platform which:

  1. looked modern and current
  2. ‘walked the walk’
  3. shared the vision clearly and simply
  4. was interactive for the user
  5. was based around the vision of the 3 authors

Read through our approach below to see how we worked with Richard and Mark to pull this together.


Brand design

One of the complications of this project was something that we hit right at the beginning – how do we brand it?

The authors work for organisations heavily involved in the field of health and wellbeing; however, as the recommendations were the personal view of the authors and not necessarily the policy or view of their employers, we decided that we needed to create a bespoke, stand alone brand.

We felt that this would also give it control over its brand voice. It also gave us total control and freedom to create a brand which lived and breathed the project.

Colour scheme

We played with a few different colour schemes. Some seemed to harsh. Some seemed to masculine. Some seemed to ‘techie’.

After much planning and thinking, we felt that the brand needed softer colours. Something which appealed beyond the typical tech world and something that the workforce across health and social care could resonate with.

We settled on a colour scheme of pinks and greys (both light and dark).

We chose this as pink conveys a feeling of universal love for oneself and others. It is associated with caring, compassion and tenderness – something that we wanted to emphasise through a project which could be seen as just for a tech audience, when in fact, it was designed to shift thinking across the whole workforce, which is predominantly female.

This is the colour scheme that we settled on:

ANewDigital_BrandBoard_colourscheme

Font scheme

Once we had a brand colour scheme, we started to consider what font scheme would suit the ‘brand voice’ that we wanted.

We wanted something fresh, different and something which did not feel like a local authority or health care style.

We also wanted something that was personalised and would stand out.

After much deliberating, and much testing, we settled on the following font scheme –

  1. we went for a logo font which was unique and not typically digital, Crushed.
  2. we mixed this with a header font of Robot Condensed
  3. along with a body font of Roboto

ANewDigital_BrandBoard_font

Logo design

We spent quite a while sketching ideas for a logo which achieved our goal of supporting the digital platform but which was also welcome, friendly and visually engaging to non-techie people.

We did some research of trends and didn’t really find anything that we liked.

After playing around with different formats and styles, we came up with the final logo design –

DigitalLogo

By turning the O in Platform into a mouse we were able to reflect the digital element but keep it friendly and resonate with the general public.

We also used the ‘O mouse’ as the site icon –

DigitalLogo_iconwhite

Icon design

To reflect the brand voice more, and achieve our aim of engaging with non-techie people, we designed a range of digital icons which mixed a friendly digital tool with care and support.

We wanted the icons to be clean, simple and easy to understand.

These are some of the icons which we used –

We also developed a suite of images for page headings, author bios, and more:


Website design

For the website we decided very early on that it had to be:

  1. simple to navigate
  2. clean and clear
  3. visually appealing and ‘breathing’ the brand voice

We designed a simple navigation which was shaped around the eight recommendations but which also told the story of the project along with details about the authors.

The structure we developed was –

  1. Home
  2. Recommendations
    • One page per recommendation
    • The conclusion
  3. Downloads
    • The full briefing
    • Poster of the recommendations
    • PowerPoint presentation
    • Social media images
  4. About the authors
    • Including a disclaimer about the recommendations
  5. Get in touch

On all of the recommendation pages we embedded a simple feedback form so that people who are reading the content can engage with the authors and share their thoughts and ideas.

This is very much stage 1 of the website. We are currently working with the authors to develop stage 2 which will be to develop a ‘case studies’ section where we can promote examples of next practice*.


Product design

As part of the project we also developed a suite of non-website products to accompany the site.

These included:

1 – The full briefing
A PDF of the entire thought piece which can be downloaded, printed off and shared –

anewdigitalplatform-1

2 – Poster of the recommendations
A PDF poster providing a summary of the 8 recommendations which can be downloaded, printed off and shared –

anewdigitalplatform-2

3 – PowerPoint presentation
A PowerPoint presentation (we know that the majority of the audience use Microsoft based software) of the entire thought piece which can be presented or downloaded, printed off and shared –

4 – Social media images
A suite of social media images for people to share across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn –


OUR WORK IN ACTION

You can view the website and the recommendations at

www.anewdigitalplatform.com


* Next practice is a commitment to a process not an end product. Its about moving from ‘best practice’ to ‘next practice’ by acknowledging that the best solutions come from development and refinement, and seeking continuous improvement. It is a process of development that never stops.


Disclaimer:

+ PLEASE NOTE:
The recommendations and opinions expressed in this thought piece are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of iMPOWER or the London Borough of Bromley

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