Case Studies

Discovery for NHS England’s Global Health online presence

NHS England’s Directorate of Global Health Partnerships aims to strengthen health systems and services in England and across the world through international exchanges of healthcare staff to help educate and train an international health workforce. Their current online presence is split across the main NHS England website and several microsites, which have been set up by the individual global health programmes to showcase their work.

Project overview

The Directorate has ambition to create a unified web presence which can be a tool to communicate information across the Directorate, to support the organisation’s short term strategy. A scoping report was carried out in 2022, which also evidenced an internal demand for a single web presence. This discovery aimed to understand end-user needs and create a set of evidence based recommendations to progress a unified website offering.

Project goals

The main goals for the project were for the client to:

  • Understand the different user roles and attributes accessing the Directorate’s web presence
  • Understand the user needs and top tasks of the Directorate’s identified user roles and how well these are currently being met
  • Understand what opportunities there are to better meet these needs and provide value
  • Articulate how to best meet user needs, through either a global hub, existing HEE web spaces or third party spaces
  • Understand the scale of the content migration challenge, to plan the migration phase, including the resources needed to repurpose and migrate high quality content to a new, single website 
  • Identify any gaps to creating, distributing and managing content on a specific Global site on HEE’s National Website Platform (NWP), as well as other sites on the NWP (e.g. on the medical profession hub)

Project team

To deliver the necessary work, the Lagom project team consisted of a dedicated Delivery Manager, Service Designer, Content Strategist and User Researcher.

What we did

  • Reviewed 11 online and documentary sources
  • Conducted 6 stakeholder interviews
  • Conducted a content inventory and sample audit
  • Conducted a web analytics review and top tasks session with the Directorate’s project team
  • Conducted 21 semi-structured interviews with end-users
  • Developed 8 user personas
  • Analysed 48 responses to a user needs validation survey
  • Created and prioritised 34 user needs with the service owner

The document review allowed us to build a better picture of the global health landscape that the Directorate currently coordinates in England and overseas. 

Through stakeholder interviews, we gained a better understanding of who the Directorate considered to be their intended user base for a new, unified global health web presence.

Based on this insight, the discovery team identified three key user roles that the Directorate’s web presence could serve. Firstly, healthcare professionals based in the UK or overseas who are interested in, currently participating or have previously engaged in a global health work activity.

Secondly, there are the host organisations involved in training and employing healthcare professionals participating in global health. For example, NHS trusts and international hospitals.

Lastly, there are the strategic partners of the Directorate whose work helps to initiate, deliver and/or fund global health work programmes across the world. Examples of these users include UK government departments and organisations such as the Tropical Health and Education Trust.

The content inventory helped us assess what content exists and the scale of effort needed for its migration. The web analytics and top tasks review also helped us as a team to understand how well engaged their existing online content is and combined with the sample audit, helped to articulate areas where further content is needed to better meet the user roles’ top tasks e.g. getting involved with a specific global health programme.

The 21 semi-structured user interviews enabled us to draw insight into the professional contexts for each of the different user roles and build an evidence-base of what they need when it comes to accessing the Directorate’s online web presence. From this qualitative user research, we produced 8 proto-persona profiles to reflect the different attributes and needs of these different user roles.

We identified 34 user needs, a selection of which were validated by healthcare professionals in a survey, therefore enabling the service owner to confidently prioritise these user needs based on quantitative, as well as qualitative evidence.

Project outcomes

The project provided the team with a practical set of recommendations to progress towards a new website, including: decisions about service ownership, steps to take to understand how content should be organised, and creating prototypes to test priority content with users.  

“Lagom supported us to understand not only our user needs in much more detail, but additionally through the process, we identified blind spots concerning our user networks and connections as well as some required skills development within the team”

David Keen, Senior lead for Education and Research, NHS England Global Health Unit

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