Project Case Study



Neilson was one of the first large and complex Drupal 8 sites to be built. I was joint lead developer along with Jozef - another senior developer. In fact this project was the very reason I was lucky enough to get a job at The Unit.

Technologies used:

  • Drupal 8
  • Custom module building
  • Custom theming
  • AngularJS
  • Atcore


Neilson required a lot of custom module development due to Drupal 8 being in its infancy, and because Neilson had a lot of bespoke requirements.

Neilson took a lot of architectural planning, I had to work very closely with the dev team along with the UX and UI team. This really was a real joint effort to make it such a success for the client.

We went through a detailed process of learning about the key users of the website. This was lead by the UX team, but development was always involved and would be present during the many user testing sessions.

This was a really important part of the process to go through. Naturally the entirety of the site, in theory and in a perfect world would work amazingly across ALL devices and browsers. Unfortunately we don't live in a perfect world - sorry. I'm very passionate about knowing your audience, knowing who is going to be using your website and what tech they are going to be using - lucky The Unit are too, and the team that worked on it were great. We learnt a huge amount about Neilson’s audience, including surprising details such as the most popular device the site was viewed on was an iPad. This made it imperative that mobile and tablet version were top notch.

Going forward, after the first phase was launched, the client requested that either myself or Jozef stayed working on Neilson due to the quality and pace of our work. I continued working on it as lead developer, with two other developers working on it with me.

It was far from a faultless project, if I were to work on it again I would do a million things differently, but that's how we learn isn't it? It is a project that is very close to my heart (now that I have had a bit of time away from it I look at it a lot more positively haha). It was a huge learning curve for us all, it really was a testament to how we all worked together as a team. Yes there were many extra hours, sleepless nights but hey I lost a few pound from stress, haha! Seriously though, we did achieve a huge amount and the new launch of the site proved itself successful when Neilson started to get an additional annual revenue of £6m a year - just through the new website.




Joint lead dev


2 years ago


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By prevailing over all obstacles and distractions, one may unfailingly arrive at his chosen goal or destination.

— Christopher Columbus