Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit

Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit approached us for a full redesign and development of the main website. Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) is a trusted organization in Simcoe County that provides services, care and information to residents and visitors in the community. The public health unit website holds an immense amount of information and we needed to find a way help users find and retain the information they are looking for.


The website redesign was threefold; first, we were collect information for the redesign; second, implement recommendations generated from the research and previous experience; third, establishing and enforcing strong brand standards across the site.


Our research began by analyzing the then current state of the website and providing detailed recommendations on best practices to fit the needs of SMDHU users. Through our Engagement 101 platform, we collected primary data from frequent users of the SMDHU website. Through secondary research and previous healthcare experience, we crafted recommendations that would appeal to current users, increase engagement both online and in-person and push important content.


The second objective involved the interpreting and implementing the recommendations. We wanted to give SMDHU a healthcare site that maintains the highest standards for user experience. The user experience from visual appeal to functionality to navigation maintained the same high standards across devices. This also meant ensuring that the site is AODA WCAG 2.0 compliant and appealing to all user groups.


We began by developing a brand standards guide which detailed proper and improper uses of the SMDHU logo and assets. Using this updated brand standards guide, we gave SMDHU consistent persona, voice, tone and language styles by developing a comprehensive content authoring framework guide for all content published by SMDHU.


The completion of each objective resulted in a new, visually appealing, user friendly website for SMDHU. The intuitive menu navigation makes the plethora of information more accessible to the general population. Highlighting current resources and services offered by the Health Unit allows for increased awareness and participation. The design, development and AODA compliance ensures that the website is accessible for all those who visit SMDHU.

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