Re-engineering Hackney Content: Weeknotes w.c. 06/05/19

This week’s big story has been our pivot from Contentful. There’s a HackIT blog post where you can learn the details but the take-home is that we don’t believe the software is yet ready for a large, content-heavy site such as ours just yet.

Myself and our tech lead, Mo, laboured over WordPress versus Contentful back when he first started at Hackney. And, although it’s ultimately proved a detour, we’re not sorry to have made our journey into unexplored territory. The switch to WordPress API has created a small technical debt but we’ve been able to repay it within a week as WordPress has so much capability out-the-box.

Making this decision was not easy but, now it’s done, it feels like a great weight has been lifted off the team’s shoulders. And velocity is now really getting somewhere.

In other news, we held a metrics workshop with our Head of Digital and the Relationship Managers, as reps of the services. You could really go large with metrics on this project so we’re taking a measured approach with a suite of standard metrics; plus a couple of specifics tailored to each service’s needs. We’re meeting up with Libraries, Archives and Culture this week to discuss their requirements.

The standard metrics will gather data including mobile usage, customer satisfaction and page readability. We’ll likely need to add to our research toolbox with HotJar, Site Improve and Readable to test our hypotheses.

Our designer, Carolina, ran a navigation workshop on Friday with some of our design apprentices. We’re looking forward to sharing our progress on this with you next week after our show and tell.

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