May Say

Unlocking the benefits of WordPress Multisite for Oxford Innovation

For over 30 years, our client Oxford Innovation has been building and running outstanding Innovation Centres, creating jobs and growing economies all across the UK. In fact, Oxford Innovation manages Harborough Innovation Centre, where you’ll find the MAY team busy at work. Oxford Innovation has supported thousands of growing SMEs to bring new products, services and processes to the market.

Each of Oxford Innovation’s 24 centres has their own website, but the design and content had become outdated, so Oxford Innovation felt they needed a refresh of the whole suite of sites to reflect their current style and values. MAY suggested that WordPress Multisite would be the best platform to use for these websites, as it allows you to manage several sites or blogs from one installation of WordPress. This means that MAY and the Oxford Innovation team can make use of shared themes, plugins and updates, significantly saving the business time, resource and money. Rather than individually building centre websites from scratch, you can duplicate a flexible template across each site that can be easily customised while still retaining a consistent structure and format.

MAY pitched for the project and started work on the websites in October after a successful presentation. We began by mapping out the deadlines for each individual centre and created a time plan for every one, alongside documents listing all of the elements that would be required and whose responsibility it was to deliver. Workshops were undertaken for initial sites, and a member of the OI team was shown how to run these workshops for the remaining sites. The purpose of these workshops was to determine the key messages and user journey for each individual site, which is a process we follow with all of our digital projects.

Next, our creative team crafted a full design for the first site, Culham Innovation Centre, and each of the sites that followed was based on this template, with their own customised features to suit the branding and personality of each centre. The flexibility of the Multisite platform allowed us to configure this template from site to site, ensuring all core features and plugins could be updated consistently. User-specific rights made sure only certain people could edit each site, minimising the risk of costly mistakes and authorised changes. All user activity is tracked to show exactly who has edited what. MAY worked closely with OI on a daily basis – this continuous communication meant that all sites were completed to standard and in a timely, cost-effective manner.

The MAY team were fully involved in the project, including video editing, web build, and copywriting. We put in place an extensive work plan to ensure every site was designed, built and approved in an efficient way – crafting 18 websites is no mean feat! But with diligence, organisation and attention to detail, we were able to complete the project with successful results.

The MAY team have specialist expertise in designing and building websites with WordPress Multisite. Could your business benefit from this flexible, user-friendly platform for your suite of websites?

Speak to our team today for advice on how WordPress Multisite could be the best, most cost and time effective way to showcase your business online.