Lady holds Axelos MSP card

Axelos Case Study

Powering
Best Practice

The client

Set up in 2014 as a joint venture between the UK Government and outsourcing giant Capita with the goal of being the world's most respected provider of global-lg best practice.

Enterprise clients choose Axelos in over 200 countries and 23 languages for sectors large and small. They are world-renowned and respected for their best practice methods, frameworks and certifications including ITIL® 4, PRINCE2®, PRINCE2® Agile and MSP®.

Axelos provides training for practitioners and consultancies who, in turn, deliver the services to corporations and government agencies across the globe. Revenue is generated through the provision of training, examinations and licensing of toolkits.

The project

As leaders in best practice Axelos needed a digital partner with enterprise-level experience who could rebuild their website from the ground up using best practice methodologies, technologies and frameworks with the aim of providing a secure, scalable and reliable platform to all of their clients worldwide.

  • Planning

    Working closely with Axelos to facilitate creation of user stories, project management, QA and Testing.

  • User Data

    Capable of working with, and migrating large volumes of sensitive user data.

  • Managing Content

    Flexible, easy to manage content by non-technical editors accessing predefined, reusable content blocks across the site.

  • Search Engine

    Improve search functionality of the training, consultant and successful candidates directories.

  • Security

    Security is not an afterthought but considered at every project stage from inception to delivery.

  • Speed

    Axelos understand that site performance is a key contributor to website success.

— All of this in a robust, secure, scalable omni-channel enterprise ready CMS.

The Design

Supplied desktop designs from an external agency were thoroughly reviewed, reworked and expanded upon.

Many agencies do not design for intermediate sizes leaving the task of interpreting tablet-like sizes to the front end developer. Sputnik see value in paying careful attention to user experience at every browser size and often customise components specifically for these sizes that are seen on tablets but also by desktop browsers where users don't have their browsers full screen. This results in a more engaging experience for all users and a better use of available space.

The Axelos.com website shown at three different sizes

…but wait there's more.

We don't want the app to work at just three sizes, we want it to work at every single pixel. Note on the following video how arrows show and hide, text changes size based on the browser width to give an optimal display at every single possible browser size. This prevents awkward overlapping or illegible text, cut-off images, or content being off-screen. Sputnik demands this level of quality in each and every web-build.

The workflow

Axelos.com is a window into the Axelos values and product ranges, a hub of educational resources and a directory of training and consulting organisations, as well as exam candidates.

All these segments are considerable packages of work in themselves and have required in-depth discovery and understanding of requirements, both from a user experience perspective and a systems set-up and data management perspective.

The approach taken was to consider all the components needed across the various templates of the website. Some of these were designed with their own variations and functionality based on the template they were required for. An inventory was created and thorough accounting for all the required instances performed.

The Axelos.com workflow

With a clear understanding of the requirements we knew Contentstack was the ideal candidate for their CMS and being a certified ContentStack Catalyst enabled development could start right away.

Key drivers for CMS selection:

  • Total control of new pages by the marketing department
  • Ease of use without steep learning curve
  • Quality assurance - layouts should not be breakable content changes
  • Reusable, flexible components

We asked Sputnik's technical director Jim Larking how the team architected the solution to achieve a fast, secure and scalable enterprise website?

We adopted a JAMStack approach for the Axelos website using a simple static serverless hosting solution, a powerful CDN and CI/CD tools to build content from the CMS. Such an architecture means both the client and agency can sleep soundly at night knowing that there are no servers to crash, no amount of traffic that can cause a slow response and minimal attack vectors that can be exploited.

That leaves us able to concentrate efforts on achieving a lightning fast first contentful paint (FCP) loading only the necessary initial markup and critical CSS for initial page render. Gatsby gave us the tools to precompile the static site using an external data sources giving a great experience for end users, content editors and developer alike.

The result

Sputnik delivered axelos.com as part of a wider digital transformation engagement. Core to the delivery was to define and adopt a modern serverless architecture and performant site speed worldwide.

Axelos.com shown on different devices and browsers
  • 100

    Google Page Speed mobile score

  • 55%

    Improvement in page load speed

Security

OWASP best practice coding standards

Secure SSL configuration

Web Application Firewall protection

Scalability

CDN site delivery for world-wide performance

Statically built site for low-tech serverless auto-scaled hosting solution

SEO

Sputnik's unique “Performance SEO

Server-side rendered markup for easy of indexing

Semantic, valid HTML

Performance

Average recorded page load speed reduced by 55%

Delivered with Google PageSpeed mobile score 100

Critical/Non-critical CSS

Lazy loading

Devops

Azure Front and back end log analytics monitoring

CI/CD

Peer reviewed version control system for collaborative working between internal and external teams

Fully serverless deployments

Content Management

Contentstack Headless CMS

Modular block editing

Flexible but unbreakable

Let's work together

Call our Managing Director Andy on 0800 680 9777 or fill in our contact form to discuss how we can help.