Helping deliver an ‘out of the ordinary’ experience across Investec Asset Management’s 22 role- and region-specific sites.

As part of a wider overhaul of their digital platform, Investec Asset Management (IAM) commissioned Box UK to research and audit their global and regional websites to understand where and how they could improve the User Experience (UX).

Examples of development of designs from sketches to wireframes

With a number of parties invested in the project, from Box UK consultants and developers through to an external creative branding agency and, of course, the Investec Asset Management team themselves, it was our job to make sure that out of the noise came one clear voice – that of the user.

So we embarked on a User Centred Design (UCD) consultancy project. We listened to users, learning what they did and didn’t like. And we provided Investec Asset Management with clear guidelines to support the implementation of designs that delivered against their key goals.

If, like Investec Asset Management, you want the answers to your pressing digital questions, it’s time you gave us a call.

Keeping the user front and centre

It was clear from the off that user needs had to sit at the heart of Investec Asset Management’s new site designs, to help achieve strategic objectives that included:

  • Streamlining user journeys and providing easier access to key content such as fund prices, literature, transactional forms and investment expertise
  • Improving performance in search results across geographic regions
  • Increasing visitor engagement
  • Better promoting thought leadership materials

We used a combination of research techniques – from one-to-one interviews through to targeted on-site and email surveys – to build up a rich picture of user perceptions, opinions, expectations, needs and, indeed, frustrations regarding the existing sites. This was supplemented with a review of 12 months’ worth of site analytics, which exposed the information users themselves may not have been aware of – including patterns and trends around traffic sources, user journeys, content consumption and device usage. Our consultants also conducted an independent review of the sites, stepping through them as a user would to highlight any potential user experience issues.

Clear, consistent and compliant

Of course, while a UCD approach had been adopted, experts from both Box UK and Investec Asset Management had a crucial part to play too. This was especially true when it came to managing specific regional, legal and industry considerations – which, for an international financial institution with 22 role- and region-specific sites, can often be extremely complex.

We facilitated workshops with groups from across the organisation to ensure that considerations such as target markets, compliance and multi-language support were covered – as well as ensuring all stakeholders had a clear vision for the redesigned website. A review of competitor websites by our UX consultants also helped identify best practice examples, and provided a better understanding of likely user expectations.

Information architecture diagram for Investec global gateway site

Extracting insight from the information

Through these activities we were able to capture the information we needed. But there was a lot of it. Consolidating our findings into succinct user stories helped communicate the requirements for the redesign, and enabled us to begin work on the site’s information architecture and UX design. We created designs for sitemaps, user interfaces and key interactions, testing these with users to confirm they matched their own internal mental models.

After all activities had been completed Investec Asset Management was provided with:

  • A more accurate view of who their current users were
  • Prioritised content and functional requirements
  • Validated sitemaps detailing how the new site should best be structured in order to match visitor tasks and expectations
  • What current content was (and wasn’t) required
  • User interface and interaction designs for streamlined user journeys

These outputs provided our team, alongside IAM’s creative branding partner, with the information they needed to make sure that the UX vision was carried through the bespoke software consultancy and development phases right through to the final deliverable – and beyond.

As a result, the new sites have garnered praise from users and leading industry bodies alike – with the redesign project shortlisted for the “Open Category Innovation Award” at the IMAIAs, and “Best Use of IT in Wholesale & Investment Banking” in the FStech Awards.

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