Novant Health: UX and Information Architecture

Icon of a mountainThe challenge

How might a regional hospital system become simultaneously more unified and more flexible?

Icon of a case studyAbout the Project

This project created a unified information architecture (IA) for Novant Health, a hospital system spanning North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. Prior to the project, Novant Health had managed 20+ separate hospital and medical center websites. The new IA maximized the efficiencies of a single website, while still addressing the unique needs of the various properties.

Cropped screenshot of the Novant homepage Visual design by CNTXT

We established common, practical methods to handle content and functionality across the sites while still allowing for variance when necessary. When a hospital wished to leverage a common component, it was deployed; when a hospital did not, the underlying architecture was still maintained. This strategy created consistencies between the sites as well as provided administrative personnel a pragmatic means to maintain the sites.

radar chart emphasizing UX and strategy
20+

Prior websites

50+

Locations

IA

Unified architecture

Eye

Improved findability

“Prior to the project ... 20+ separate hospital and medical center websites.”

Taking account of every section of every hospital site, the team created a hierarchical taxonomy (i.e. an index of categorized content). Upon completion of the taxonomy, we created a detailed set of supporting wireframes.

Wireframe showing the progression from taxonomy to UX/UI recommendations

Top level pages differentiate themselves through a consistent, higher production value layout than subsequent deeper pages

Another wireframe that shows how some UI elements were designed to be used globally, while other elements were specific to individual hospitals.

Many users primarily seek information about services (e.g. Radiology, Emergency Services, etc.) along a "service path."

Unified Information Architecture (IA)

The new site's IA provided users an effortless and frictionless user experience, promoting discovery across Novant Health's wide range of health content and service offerings.

  • Directly addressed user needs of patients, visitors, doctors, employees, job seekers, investors, and members of the media.
  • Increased the opportunities to market and merchandise content across the website, opening avenues for increased event and social marketing efforts.
  • Improved the user experience of key functional areas, including Maps & Directions, Find a Doctor, Send a Message, ER Wait Times, Pre-Registration, Contact Us, and Events.
Flow chart showing how the various hospital websites were interconnected. For example, how the hospital network shares a single set of corporate content. Enterprise-wide map describing how users navigate various domains

The website has continued to evolve since launch, as Novant Health introduces new facilities, services and content. The comprehensive IA has served as its armature, furthering both systemization and versatility.

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