Skillnz is a joint initiative of the New Zealand government, and industry and trade organisations to raise awareness of workplace learning programmes.
The Skillnz website has been developed by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) and provides online support for a print and radio campaign targeting employers and employees. Motive was brought on to bring the website up to required technical standards and tie the look-and-feel in with the June 2005 campaign.
A feature of the redesign is the single-page ‘Quickstart guides’. These guides introduce the benefits of ‘learning on the job’ and a summary of the programmes available to employers, employees and young people. The website then goes on to provide eligibility criteria and suggests how to ‘get involved’.
“…structuring the website around likely tasks and information needs…”
“Our approach has been to structure the website around the likely tasks and information needs of both first-time and repeat users,” explains Andy Kirkwood, Motive’s creative director.
“One of our first questions was ‘what is workplace learning?’ The redesign begins to answer this by linking to the programmes from the navigation bar [at the top of each page].”
At a technical level, the website was revised to meet public sector standards prescribed by the New Zealand Government Web Guidelines.
“[Motive] listened to what we wanted and added value and expertise.”
Web Analyst, TEC
“We had high expectations and a long list of requirements,” explains Natasha Hall, TEC’s web analyst.
“Motive’s understanding of, and appreciation for W3C, e-govt guidelines, and best practice methodologies along with their user-focused approach was both impressive and reassuring. They listened to what we wanted and added value and expertise.”
Post-launch, Motive added a survey to the Skillnz website. The survey asks users how they found out about the website, how well it met their needs, and asks for suggestions on the information they would like to see added.
A link to the survey is provided on the homepage and quickstart guides. If the survey is not completed before the user leaves the website, a pop-up window is launched when the visitor links away or closes the browser window.
The redesigned Skillnz website was launched July 2005.
In the modern knowledge economy, pressure is on employers to deliver effective training to their staff—in terms of both keeping the right people and ensuring the maintenance of correct skills.