tooling australia

Tooling Australia website screenshotIt’s probably time I owned up to this one.

That might sound like an odd way to add another site to my portfolio, but the Tooling Australia project is a bit different to the others. It’s been built for Internet Explorer, for a start.

Yes, that is the browser that is used by – as far as I can tell – 100% of the intended users, but it doesn’t excuse not catering to other browsers, or web standards. Nor do the time and money constraints that forced the issue.

Look, I’m not even going to get into the pros and cons of this project other than to say I accepted a brief and I delivered.

It has been a big job – in scope, in budget and in timeframe – but I concede it doesn’t rank among my best works.

It does have some nice functionality to it, and it was an interesting challenge in organising the content to take the client to a new level of online presence.

It’s actually been up and running for a few weeks and is already proving its worth to the client and to the tooling industry in Australia.

Defining characteristics for the project included the need for:

  • client admin overall content management system
  • member login to member information CMS
  • registered non-member login to RFQ CMS
  • ecommerce for membership management
  • ecommerce for event registration
  • ecommerce for publications subscription
  • secure server space for file sharing
  • facility to lodge RFQs online
  • events calendar
  • news feed
  • site advertising
  • structured search facility by industry supplier characteristics
  • structured browse facility by industry supplier characteristics
  • all the usual facilities like site search, email accounts, statistics etc

In meeting those needs, I drew on some commercial out-of-the-box applications and in putting them together I found I wasn’t able to pay as much attention to browser interoperability, accessibility demands or web standards in general as I might have liked.

This was compounded by the client’s redrawing of the brief over the development period, to a much greater extent than I’ve previously encountered.

I guess this represents the reality that sometimes in striving to meet client needs, circumstances can conspire to refuse a developer or designer the opportunity to implement everything they’d like, in the way they’d prefer.

So shoot me.