Built by Design
A Thomson Reuters Internal SharePoint Site,
Reimagined by Designers, for Designers
Thomson Reuters is the world’s leading source of news and information for professional markets. With a mission to “inform the way forward,” their custom reports and software solutions support Fortune 100 law firms, corporate legal departments and governments, as well as tax compliance and accounting firms internationally.
Thomson Reuters cares deeply about design. It is fundamental to their core products, which range from detailed reports across industries to hosting sites with highly specialized functions like WestLaw and Reuters® Pictures world news imagery. Indeed, the company has a global team of designers, project managers, and engineers crafting these content resources in an organization that spans multiple timezones.
Their internal design team SharePoint site is a vital resource for both onboarding new Thomson Reuters employees and for the many designers who visit the site for information regarding Thomson Reuters Design Methodology and other topics. The existing site was out-of-date, and internal users were having difficulty finding key information quickly.
Thomson Reuters approached Allovus asking for help creating a visually elegant site that was easy to navigate, and that felt like it was designed for designers. We knew that this project was squarely in the Allovus wheelhouse. With our deep experience in crafting clean user interfaces driven by a coherent design language and expertise in SharePoint projects, we were excited to dive into this work.
THE LAY OF THE LAND
Every engagement is unique and tailored to the client—but we have frameworks and methods for bread-and-butter projects like this. Our first objective was to scope out the project by listening to the needs of the people who would use the site.
We conducted an initial round of interviews with fifteen Thomson Reuters employees representing different areas of the company, including new hires and long-term employees. Once the interviews were complete, a follow-up survey was sent to more than 180 employees to rank the importance of the content currently found on the site.
Results of the interviews and survey influenced the content placement and depth of the site. The combination of interviews and survey helped us prioritize key content and eliminate areas seeing little use or interest. Additionally, we provided an audit of their entire existing site which helped our client truly understand the depth of materials and strategize how to allocate them moving forward.
The research findings enabled our team to prioritize content and assess that users desired an experience based on visual wayfinding within a framework that looked like a site created for designers.
THE EXPLORATION BEGINS
We organized several FigJam working sessions with key Thomson Reuters stakeholders. We shared the user feedback gathered and our teams explored content prioritization and categorization for key areas of the site.
MAPPING THE SITE
Initial sitemap explorations were created to explore content and new, simplified navigation solutions. This overview was also used to highlight areas of the site that needed new or updated information and to establish page counts for the production phase.
As this is a SharePoint site, we established three core patterns for content pages based on the amount of information provided for each page, ranging from little content to deep content.
Visual aspects of the site were critical, as the site is used by designers. The solutions had to be brand compliant, but also unique.
After reviewing the Thomson Reuters brand guidelines, we found a little-used visual treatment that served as inspiration for a series of symbols designed to represent each key area within the site.
Icon concept explorations
New employee onboarding
Additionally, we created top banners within the site which feature a custom illustrative solution based on the symbol representing that specific content area. These colors, symbols, and patterns operate as guideposts, helping the user understand when they have reached the desired location within the site (and add a bit of fun as well).
Page header concept exploration
BRINGING IT HOME
Thomson Reuters is a global company that moves at the speed of business, twenty-four hours a day. The existing SharePoint site had to remain in use until the new site was ready for migration. We provided an initial first pass of the SharePoint solution in our own sandbox. This site enabled the client to review content, images, navigation, and site behavior in order to provide a first round of feedback. From there, the final site was built out on the client side and content was migrated from their current site to the new one.
AN ONGOING RELATIONSHIP
Following a successful launch, the new design site has been used by thousands of designers, project managers, and engineers along with new hires as a resource for how they work with teams, the tools they use, and the processes they advocate.
We enjoy a continued strategic partnership with Thomson Reuters for ongoing design work and consultation. The Allovus Studio collaborates with their design teams providing product designs, data visuals, and consultation.
How can we redesign your world? Reach out to us, and let’s get started.
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