Murdoch University

An award-winning Sitefinity website






Murdoch University in Western Australia is a worldwide centre for learning, teaching, research and industry. It has a strong tradition of free thinking and collaboration, encouraging students to create and innovate – whether with other students, business, alumni or the wider community. With a diverse body of staff and students and internationally-recognised research, they needed a digital presence that reflected their global outlook.


We were tasked with evaluating the University’s existing digital presence and creating a programme of work that would enable a far-reaching digital transformation for the institution. With key objectives including an enhanced experience for existing and prospective students, and greater brand recognition internationally, we needed to create an ambitious and customer-centric vision to lead the way to the creation of the University's transformed digital estate. The programme of discrete projects across their digital estate culminated in the design and development of a powerful new website in Sitefinity CMS.

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We jumped straight in by attending the Murdoch open day, fully immersing ourselves in the on-campus university experience. Then we set to work developing a solid digital strategy informed by detailed technical scoping work and extensive engagement with prospective and current students and staff. We uncovered crucial insights and opportunities for both improving the digital experience and delivering tangible, measurable outcomes for the business.

We developed a new persona-driven information architecture (IA), using advanced techniques like mental modelling, face-to-face and remote card sorting. This extensive engagement also informed the creation of a robust content delivery plan emerging from a deep understanding of user needs.

Given our extensive experience in large-scale change management programmes, we were able to provide the University with a detailed change communications plan and produce content for internal communications initiatives. This was fundamental to the success of the University’s transformation and helped them to avoid common pitfalls.

Murdoch already had a strong, highly capable digital team. We worked with them to upskill, provide coaching and mentoring and train in using Sitefinity CMS.


The new website pairs a clear and confident design with intuitive navigation. A newly designed course finder function ensures prospective students have all the information they need at their fingertips.

Importantly, the website has enabled Murdoch to succeed in delivering the digital innovation and excellence it strives for. Julie Whitlock, the University’s Associate Director of Digital Innovations, reported that 78 per cent of users surveyed stated they ‘loved’ the visual style, and that it served their intended purpose. 

To top it all off, the website was named Sitefinity Website of the year 2017 in the Education category.  




Sitefinity Website of the Year 2017 for Education


increase in traffic from mobile devices


increase in traffic to the "Study" pages




  • UX strategy

User experience

  • UX design
  • Information architecture
  • User research
  • Personas


  • UI design
  • Creative direction
  • Voice, tone and messaging
  • Digital identity guidelines


  • Development

Related work

Edinburgh Business School

Mastering the human side of learning


University College London

Crafting a digital-first student experience