UX Optimizations for Workforce WindsorEssex—a Case Study

Simple UX optimizations lead to improved visitor engagement and retention for Workforce WindsorEssex.

This case study highlights the importance of conducting regular UX audits on your website. Simple UX optimizations can make a big impact.


Workforce WindsorEssex

Our Role

Design + Build

About This Project

Workforce WindsorEssex is a workforce and community development board whose mission is to lead regional employment and community planning for the development of a strong and sustainable workforce.

The website features over 950 pages of content and sees an average of 68,884 visits a month. The types of users that frequent the site are varied and include: jobseekers, employers, students, educators, workforce boards, and other government agencies.

The Challenge

Rather than undertake an entire website redesign, the desire was to build on the strong foundation that was already in place. Elev8 was tasked with improving the website navigation, reducing visitor frustration and enhancing the overall usability and effectiveness of the website.

To make the most of the allocated budget, we relied heavily on Google Analytics to help identify problem areas. Decreasing rates of returning visitors, page depth and session durations were indicative of potential issues with visitor engagement and retention.

The site navigation consisted of 4 different layers of menus along with some inconsistent labels and unfamiliar brand terms. Additionally, the home page included over 70 different links, all of which were resulting in confusion and decision fatigue with visitors.

Through our analysis, we also discovered slower load times, particularly with the home page. This can negatively impact user experience, brand perception, search engine performance and more.

The Process

The process was broken down into the following phases:

01 Research

Analytics review
Performance audit

02 Define Users

Audience analysis

03 IA

Content audit
Site map

05 Design

High fidelity prototypes

06 Development

Template & style updates
Job search integration
Performance optimization
Elasticsearch implementation

07 Launch

Monitoring & continuous improvement

The Solution

UX optimizations included:

  • Implement mega menu to better accomodate large site map and help visitors understand their choices more clearly.
  • Restructure site map with clear and consistent labels.
  • Improve usability of search by moving the search field to a standard location and deploying a feature-rich search engine (Elasticsearch).
  • Integrate job search toolbar to allow users to quickly perform job searches right from the home page.
  • Consolidate blog posts into a single page with added functionality that allow visitors to browse different types of blog content.


Computer monitor displaying the previous home page.


Computer monitor displaying the UX optimizations implemented on the Workforce WindsorEssex website.


The UX optimizations were deployed on January 5, 2022. With just 30 days since launch, we’re already seeing encouraging KPIs:

Returning Visitors

  • 11.51%

Sessions Per User

  • 8.50%

Avg. Session Duration

  • 48.83%

Pages Per Session

  • 21.76%

Bounce Rate

  • 8.97%

Home Page Load Speed

  • 72.31%