Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or impact of the engagement?
WDG has fulfilled all our requirements. We wanted to have attention paid to the relative hierarchy of our content, making it more utilitarian rather than just presented. We wanted to encourage users to go to certain pieces of content that we selected, with a focus on donations and email engagement. WDG also designed an entryway to the magazine publication for our organization. All of these parts needed to fit together; in my mind, it turned out great. I will have better data after we’ve had a few months to understand what we’re doing.
The site isn’t the same experience by far. It’s a breath of fresh air. People can make their own changes, automatically crop images to the correct size, see all content as it comes up and edit it directly, and so on. It’s indescribable—comparable to going to a food processor from a mortar and pestle. My team is very pleased about the upcoming launch, and we’ve had a sigh of relief since there were many directions that the project could have taken. Our success is in no small part due to having a great, experienced design team.
How did WDG perform from a project management standpoint?
We had weekly meetings and in-person check-ins with our main contact and WDG’s designer. We had many architecture discussions and also moved on to the design components. WDG shared work through InVision, which was helpful for the people who were not visually oriented. Towards the end, we had more frequent meetings since we had to make decisions. The final delivery was on time.
What did you find most impressive about WDG?
There was a level of mutual respect and admiration between our teams. My presence on the Green America side has smoothed things a bit since I do have a background in website redesign, but I don’t know how the project would have turned out if we’d used a team without the same level of communication skills as WDG. Everyone on our side had a clear understanding of what we needed to do, and WDG helped navigate through our hierarchical process. We have a participatory workforce, so everyone on the team is empowered to make decisions and comments. WDG handled everything with aplomb, style, and grace.
WDG was not afraid to push back, which was very important since we didn’t have the knowledge in-house. We needed someone to flag issues and highlight any wrong approaches. It’s what most impressed me about WDG, and it’s important to know for someone looking to hire them. They’re a full partner for projects and can bring expertise to the table.
Are there any areas WDG could improve?
WDG did everything we needed them to do. More on-site participation would have helped may have helped for additional comfort with our staff, but is not necessary for the final deliverables. I even found it amazing that WDG came to our location three times.
What tips or recommendations could you share that might increase the likelihood of success with WDG?
WDG can deal with multilevel, bureaucratic institutions, navigating through that and providing a finished product. This can be a herculean task. They were nimble and knew how to make our stakeholders understand the work. That clarity was very beneficial to our team.
The internal team working on the engagement needs to understand what it wants and have a document which prioritizes its needs and required features. It’s extremely difficult to communicate that to a team like WDG unless the team knows what it wants internally. We did have an RFP, and all the content type were laid out as much as possible. Every hour spent internally on the planning will save two hours during the engagement.