Conran Design Group

Project Overview

Conran Design Group approached me to redevelop their existing ASP.net website using Drupal. This was an exciting challenge that required a flexible approach to Drupal development and involved many different stakeholders from across the group. Designed by Conran's in-house team, the site seemed more like a static HTML build than a typical CMS powered site. Drupal 7 was used to provide granular control over the display of content items and provide advanced CMS functionality for managing various article types such as blog posts and case studies.

Objectives

Conran Design Group had an existing CMS that was powered by ASP.net but was no longer updated and had become a problem for the company as it was restricting their marketing capabilities. Working with the design and front-end development team I needed to create a Drupal website that was easy to manage and allowed the company to produce a great user experience across a mixture of devices.

What I did

I have been developing websites with Drupal since 2005 when I first started using Drupal 4. I have lots of experience of working with a variety of content management systems and I understand how editorial workflow can either liberate or hinder the digital presence of a company. Using this knowlegde I approached the project with the understanding that Conran Design Group needed the site to be stylistically flexible whilst also be easy to update. There were several problems to overcome regarding the design and implementation notably certain pages reqiured a mix of static and dynamic content. These issues were solved by using the Panels Drupal module which allows content to be mixed and adjusted easily from within the CMS.

The site was designed by the in-house team at Conran Design Group and I worked closely with their lead front-end developer during the integration phase. I employ a fairly simple approach to this type of project that allows the front-end to be side-loaded into the CMS so it can be updated with little or no changes required to the CMS templates. This means that presentation and data are nicely separated which results in a more efficient project lifecycle.

The client required various custom module to be developed that provided enhanced functionality and control over the various aspects of the site.

Results

Conran Design Group were very happy with the site and it allowed them to move away from a problematic legacy content management system and onto a modern mobile responsive Drupal setup.

Testimonial

We employed Justin's highly accomplished Drupal skills for a few initiatives during 2014 and 2015. He is highly-professional at handling issues and developing sites in tandem with our in-house design and development teams. What really stood out was his conscientiousness and eye for detail, I can strongly recommend him.

– Ian Howlett | Head of Digital at Conran Design Group