In the winter of 2016, I took part in an in-class contest to redesign the Stratford Police Service website for the city of Stratford, Ontario. The aim for my team was to refresh the site by giving it a more modern and polished look, to show just enough creativity while still staying true to a classic and serious police website, and to have the information better organized and easier to find for the wide demographics of the city of Stratford.
The original website was tough to navigate and the information was both outdated and not structured the best possible way. It was very difficult to find what you need without clicking through multiple pages on the site. After we completed multiple competitor analysis we realized that we would need to change and update a lot of the site. One of the main goals in our team was to reorganize the information in a more logical manner and display it more efficiently. We did so by changing the main tabs (which meant separating and grouping information for a better fit and moving all the pages around), and by displaying quick links on the homepage to the most frequented pages to quickly send users the way they want to go.
We wanted the site to keep a classic police look and that's why the main colors are red and blue. We also added some style by placing a colorful stripe through the header and browser background that is consistent throughout the entire site. Every top-level page has a modern hero-sized image to help introduce and explain the page content. The site needs to be really easy to use as a large part of the population in Stratford is elderly. An example of the design choices we took to accommodate for that is the use of large icons. Large buttons with simple icons are used across the site to help users find what they need and visualize what they will find behind the links. We also added a button at the top of the page that would allow users to adjust the size of the font.
App Prototype and Design
My team also created a sleek informational app for mobile devices. The Stratford Police App was created to provide valuable information regarding necessary services within the Stratford region for the police service and the community. They mentioned how they longer wanted to hand out flyers and papers. They wanted an app that had everything in one place. Tools used: Invision, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe Photoshop.
Social Media Plan
As a group, one of our main concern for the Stratford Police Service was the lack of online presence and engagement. Aside from a twitter account, the service was not active online. Our key objective is to focus on utilizing social media platforms to the fullest potential. This means building deeper relationships with the community, expanding the user engagement, and proactively publishing content on these networks. We gave them example posts to post on certain occasions and Facebook graphics to help build their online presence.