UBC News microsite gets a refresh

Our team worked collaboratively and cross-functionally to deliver a refreshed and more flexible site in seven weeks.

UBC News website designed by OXD

We’re excited to share the newly redesigned UBC News microsite, the first stop for journalists looking for the latest news about the University of British Columbia. On our client’s wish-list was a refreshed look, an updated CMS template, and a site that's better equipped to handle high volume traffic at peak times. The existing UBC News site didn't meet the University’s new brand guidelines and the inflexible template posed an ongoing challenge for the content creators. And it was critical for the refresh to roll out without any disruption to the site's existing visitors.

UBC News homepage before and after redesign

By collaborating internally and overlapping at various stages, we were able to keep the project running smoothly, efficiently, and on budget. Our Creative, User Experience, and Development teams worked closely using the Agile method, which had them refining together on screen rather than working separately in silos.

UBC News Microsite by OXD

Collaboration is key

Key to this project's success was keeping UBC's team involved from start to finish. Our internal teams worked cross-functionally and collaborated with the client, making the refresh and re-theme more efficient. To get everybody on the same page about desired outcomes, we hosted a "Design Jam" for the UBC team. Having exchanged ideas, shared inspiration, and built consensus, we were now ready to hit the ground running. Because we had a clear understanding of the client's vision, we were able to deliver the finished product faster.

Desktop version of UBC homepage shown on iMac and mobile version shown on iPhone

A delicate surgery

Senior Front-End Developer Foley Lynn described the implementation of a new and more flexible CMS system as “a delicate surgery”. The existing UBC News site was twelve years old, home to thousands of articles, and built by another team. Our team implemented the new CMS without any disruption to the thousands of existing pages.

The finished product is easier for content creators to use and offers more flexibility, without ever compromising the mobile experience for the end user. The old content remains unaffected by our template changes and new visitor traffic to the site is up. The new UBC News site is also more secure and more stable, which means it can better handle high traffic, without disruption.

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