Creative Consulting & Development Works

We are a research, evaluation and communications consultancy, servicing nonprofits, governments and donors with innovative solutions within the development context.

Launch of our New Website

1 October 2013

CC&DW website homepage

After months of anticipation, Creative Consulting & Development Works (CC&DW) is proud to announce our newly designed website!

The original Development Works website was designed in 2009. Our business and team have grown so much over the last four years, yet the website stayed the same. We needed a site that reflected our growth and creativity, and knew it was time for an upgrade. We began planning and designing in March 2013 in collaboration with Cape Town web designer Alex Maughan, and most of the rebuilding took place between July and September.

We are thrilled with the results of our new site and feel the design effectively showcases our breadth of work experience and service offerings: Communications, Evaluation, Research, CSI, Internship Placement, Facilitation & Planning and Project Management.

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There are a number of principles to consider for truly effective web design and redesign. Here, we give you a peek into our approach first hand.

When designing a new website or undertaking a redesign, it’s important to not only think about the visual aspects of the site. User-ability is key to a great website, as audience experience is directed through a series of clicks. Organisations need to guide these clicks intentionally to ensure viewers experience the site in the way they want them to.

So how does a user think and how can an organisation ensure that a new website is effective?

When planning the new Creative Consulting & Development Works design and functionality, we carefully considered what type of information hierarchy best serves the goals of our users.

The decision was made to channel all content via the high-level services we offer – both for more information on those services and for best organisation of our large portfolio of case studies and client testimonials.

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By organising content according to service, users are provided with higher-level and actionable context to understand what they are reading about. Following in the same vein, the news section is now also organised according service type, as well as sector.

Although ‘unseen’ to the average viewer or staff member, website organisation and hierarchy is also extremely important. Considering these four major points will ensure a focused and successful website:

  1. Simplicity – include only the elements that are most important for communication
  2. Clarity – components should be designed with a clear meaning
  3. Distinctiveness – important properties of elements should be easy to distinguish
  4. Emphasis – important elements should be easily perceived

And finally, although earlier we advised to not focus only on the visual aspects of a new website, visual elements are nevertheless crucial to a successful and contemporary design. Here are some basic graphic tips to incorporate:

  • Design should answer questions and not create them
  • Become friends with white space
  • Use a maximum of two typefaces
  • Use concise writing that gets to the point
  • Focus and guide audiences using visual elements and images
  • Embrace certain conventions such as search placement, site navigation, etc.
  • KIS, Keep it Simple!

It’s difficult to tick every box, but hopefully we have addressed most of these pointers in our new website! Let us know what you think! Email us at media@developmentworks.co.za.

 

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