Website design and build

QA Apprenticeships

The client

QA Apprenticeships is one of the leading apprenticeship training providers in the country – working with blue chip clients to deliver apprenticeship programmes in professional and technical occupational areas including e.g. IT, business and management. They operate nationally and are one of very few apprenticeship providers judged ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted.

Project overview 

Faced with a clunky and outdated website, with a vast array of outdated irrelevant content, and poor cross-system integration, QA were unable to attract and effectively manage the applications of potential apprentices.

Working with the QA marketing team we started the process by firstly analysing the previous 12 months’ user journeys to identify current user journeys. We then built relevant personas and identified a clear and coherent content strategy, together with acquisition templates to support the in-house team. We then streamlined and simplified the user journeys, introducing navigational options so that potential applicants could not only find the information they wanted quickly and easily, but could also explore options and very readily apply for relevant opportunities.

We worked very collaboratively with QA’s IT and back-office teams to design a user-experience that made sense to the applicant but that also met the very stringent data security and connection protocols required by their in-house applicant processing systems (Tribal Maytas). This has had an extremely positive effect on the number of relevant applications and has also removed duplication.

In order to test some of our thinking prior to the new website project, we also designed and implemented a dedicated microsite and social media campaign run over the Christmas period aimed at young people who might have felt that their immediate career or further education choice made a few months earlier may not suit them. Called #NotWhatIExpected, the social media campaign and supporting cinema ad campaign we produced using real-world apprentices, directed people to the microsite where the opportunities of technical apprenticeships were presented, together with videos and case studies of current apprentices who had experienced this change of heart.

With the introduction of the apprenticeship levy, many of QA’s existing clients have now identified existing employees who are now eligible for apprenticeships. To service this, QA were operating a paper-based sign-up process that took over 2 hours per candidate. We designed a tablet/web-based sign-up process that directly integrates with the same applicant tracking process used by the website. This has reduced average sign-up time per candidate to 35 minutes.

Successes

Our work with QA has delivered tangible results for them including:

  • A 23% increase in unique website visits in the 12 months following our site relaunch.
  • A 27% increase in the proportion of student applications that were relevant to the programmes for which they applied i.e. which passed a simple sift.
  • A substantial reduction in the time taken by QA staff to complete candidate enrolments at the latter, face-to-face stage given candidates’ earlier engagement with our digital solution
  • A 100% reduction in duplicate applications from students; analysis and feedback told us that the intuitive interface and simple process we had built made it much easier for students to apply and far less likely that they would stop mid-process.

Deliverables

  • Redeveloped website
  • Streamlined application process
  • New API for MAYTAS, BAPS and Advorto integration
  • Social media campaign
  • Cinema ads
  • Dedicated campaign website