UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) was recently set up by an Act of Parliament to streamline nationwide research and innovation funding by integrating the seven existing research councils, Innovate UK and Research England, whilst preserving their unique identities.
This raised the contentious question of how to best handle the nine incumbent websites in a joined up online presence that meets user needs, reflects the new formation, and preserves the Councils’ identities.
We ran the Discovery phase to unpick these questions.
We conducted interviews, workshops, usability tests, card sorts, and multiple surveys with the researchers, businesses, and policy makers that use the websites to get to the heart of the user experience and needs.
Our research revealed which user needs overlapped and differed across the existing nine websites. In particular, around the core user journey of identifying and applying for research funding grants.
We ran usability testing sessions to highlight which incumbent Council websites are already doing a good job at meeting the user needs, to encourage adoption of existing best practice.
We also consulted 1-2-1 with over 25 stakeholders including scientific research experts, content managers, technology leaders and suppliers to understand the pressing and shifting organisation goals surrounding the website/s.
We concluded the Discovery with recommendations on how to deliver a web presence that could square their ambition to meet user needs, reflect the formation of UKRI, and preserve the individual council identities.
We worked hard to give the UKRI Digital Team the evidence-based vision and roadmap they needed to progress. And we’re pleased to say they adopted our recommendations are now pursuing the Alpha and Beta phases.