The Brief

A UX review leading to actionable steps for improving Stroke Association’s beneficiary-focused websites.

The Client

The Stroke Association exists to help people rebuild their lives after stroke, and their online offerings are a key part of the support they offer. However their team felt that significant improvements could be made.

So they approached Outlandish to help them understand what their beneficiaries want from their online journeys, to help them know how well their websites currently deliver on these, and to develop a plan for change.

Our Solution

We implemented a UX-led project with stroke survivors, carers and stakeholders, to help identify how beneficiaries currently experience the charity across the two websites at and

User research, Design Sprints, prototyping and user testing unearthed valuable insights into the needs of survivors. A roadmap gave Stroke Association actionable steps to deliver change, and a final report helped engage their internal power holders.

Furthermore, as stroke survivors often experience physical and cognitive impairments we collaborated throughout with an accredited WAS (Web Accessibility Specialist) Drupal developer from our friends at Agile Collective. Their continual oversight and input, alongside that of stroke survivors themselves, ensured accessibility was forever at the fore of the project.

Our process

1. Theory of Change

First we facilitated a project Theory of Change with Stroke Association stakeholders, focusing on the Final Goal for the project (the change we want to see in the world) and the tangible outcomes that must be achieved along the way.

2. A UX Listening Tour

We next undertook interviews with internal stakeholders, stroke survivors and carers. Findings were collated into 10 core themes, including Tone & Belonging, Finding Information, Support with Entitlements and attitudes towards Stroke Association offering multiple websites.

3. Analytics review

A Google Analytics investigation provided wider context and quantitative data to the research gathered in the Listening Tour.

4. A roundtable event with peer organisations

We knew that many of the challenges and opportunities involved in supporting people online in times of need have also been experienced by other organisations. So we hosted a roundtable event with peers from other UK charities to gather learnings and to identify possible solutions.

The event was especially insightful, and included participants from Shelter, Mind, the Brain Tumour Charity, Prospect (a UK trade union), Scope and Stroke Association.

5. Design Sprint

Co-design is something that we passionately believe in at Outlandish, and a Design Sprint is one expression of it. Our Sprint here was a series of output focused workshops with Stroke, Outlandish and stroke survivors. We collaboratively: 

6. Interactive prototypes and user testing

Following the Design Sprint, Outlandish’s designer took the initial concepts and produced an interactive concept prototype to demonstrate how a future might work. The design here drew upon the Design Systems and its core Design Principles to:

The prototype was user tested with stroke survivors, and following our observations the concept was iterated and moved through another round of user testing.

7. Roadmapping and product vision

We concluded the project with a final workshop to produce a roadmap alongside actionable recommendations that could be taken to stakeholders and decision makers. 

Based on the results of our previous work researching, conceptualising and user testing, together we identified the key actions that the team must take now, as well as the capabilities that a future would provide to users and the organisation.

We also co-developed a Product Vision. This helped the Stroke team turn a loose concept for a website into a product, and something communicable to the wider organisation. It also helps the Stroke Association – and’s Product Owner(s) – make decisions about if and how new ideas and requests from across the organisation align with where the product is heading.

Going on

We have been very happy to collaborate with stroke survivors and the Stroke Association team once more, and the initial response to the work has been positive.

Buy-in for the vision has been attained, the first steps in the roadmap are underway and the roadmap itself has proved a useful tool for those working in a delivery role.

We have also begun working with the team to design a new navigation – one of the first steps in the vision for a future that brings together the strengths of each of their current websites.