Wellcome Collection
2016, UX, Code & Theory

The Problem
The Wellcome Collection wanted evolve their digital offering and explore the future of both collections and museums. They had a complex brand archtiecture which needed to brought together into a cohesive offering yet cater to their diverse audiences. They engaged us to set the foundations of the project including strategy and a style guide to allow the inhouse team to continue the work.

Project Goals 
​— Communicate the spirit, values, vision and knowledge of Wellcome to a diverse global audience
— Create a seamless user experience for Wellcome digital that encourages exploration across collections - from the venue to the online, and back again.
— Establish a process, building blocks and platform for Wellcome to develop, validate and extend ideas in the future. offer controls for user interest.

The Solution
Leverage the editorial capabilities of both Wellcome Collection and Wellcome Library to bridge the two experiences. This allowed users with very differing midsets and needs to move easily between the two types of experiences. 

User Research & Workshops

User Research
We conducted a set of indepth interviews across the various user groups, ranging from surveys to ethnographic studies. We created experience maps from these interviews to structure our work around.

Over the course of the project we created a set of workshops to keep the Wellcome team involved in our work. We needed to be closely aligned with all of the process behind the decisions that were made so they could take on the project after our involvement.

User Testing
We conducted 3 sets of testing during the design phase;
desirablity, tree testing and card sorting.

1. Desirability testing (pre design)
Wellcome were concerned that the research audience would not accept a new look and feel if it was too far towards the visitor aesthetic (bold, colourful, friendly). We tested a range of interface styles from other sources to create a recommendation prior to starting designs.


2. Open Card Sorting (IA test part 1)
We proposed combining all three Wellcome sites under the Wellcome Collection and as such we needed to check what users percpeption of the new mix of content was. We chose open card sorting so we could better understand how users grouped the information. We then asked users to then tree test our architecture so we could compare the results.

3. Tree Testing (IA test part 2)
We combined the card sort with a practical tree test to cross reference the results of each test. We asked the users where they expected to find specific pieces of information in the architecture we were proposing. We tweaked the architecture based ont he results of both tests, the main area of confusion being around the new editorial offering as it wasn't associated wiht Wellcome in users mental models yet.


Style Guide
The final output of the project was a set of style guidelines
for the internal development team.
The digital styleguide can be seen here

"Hollie played a massive role in revamping Wellcome Collection’s complex digital offering. She brought scads of experience across the cultural and commercial sectors to this discovery and design project. As UX Lead, Hollie was the glue that held together the collaboration. A natural facilitator, Hollie kept the teams - both agency and client-side - focused on our objectives. 

Apart from being a skilled and strategy-minded user researcher and information architect, Hollie is also a total pleasure to work with. I would be thrilled to work with Hollie on another project in the future."

Jennifer Phillips-Bacher
Product Manager at Wellcome Collection