Hutchhouse

We are looking for a top class Front End Developer!

Written by: bhutchins

July 7, 2014

We are looking for a top class Front End Developer! featured image

If you’re a talented, enthusiastic Front End Developer looking to join an ambitious and successful digital agency then we want to hear from you.

What are we looking for? Well, we want someone who loves Front End Web Development, who understands the importance of user experience and who can own Front End for Hutchhouse. We are looking for a top-class front end coder that has a real passion for HTML, CSS (Compass, Sass or Less), Javascript frameworks like backbone.js and uses TDD techniques.

Ideally you have:

  • A deep understanding of HTML5, CSS3, Javascript
  • A thorough knowledge of Javascript frameworks such as Backbone.js, Knockout.js, Knockback.js
  • Am understanding of Javascript unit testing and web browser automation tools such as Selenium
  • Worked closely with Back End teams

About Hutchhouse:
We are an expanding interactive agency based in south Oxfordshire. Formed in 2003 by two leading industry figures, we have launched countless successful websites that delight our clients and give pride to our team. Our clients range from small/medium sized businesses to high street brands. Projects are amazingly varied and exciting, with new challenges keeping our approach fresh and innovative. We’re growing and evolving and we want people with the right skills and a great attitude to join us on the journey.

Sounds like it might be for you?
Full details of this role is available to download here.

Hutchhouse kicks off the first Creative Clinic at Milton Park – 29th May 07:30 – 09:00

Written by: bhutchins

May 13, 2014

Hutchhouse kicks off the first Creative Clinic at Milton Park – 29th May 07:30 – 09:00 featured image

Having moved into Milton Park earlier this year we’ve had our heads down, cracking on with our work and generally settling in. However, it soon occurred to us that there wasn’t a massive amount of creative ‘get togethers’ happening on the Park so we decided that the only thing to do was to create our own.

Milton Park is massive, there’s over 150 businesses here and some 7,000 people working on the Park making it one of the biggest in Europe and in-keeping with the trend here in Oxfordshire, many of them are science based.

There’s seem seriously intense stuff going on here.

Social Media, Marketing & PR talk at University College Birmingham

Written by: sholloway

November 13, 2013

Social Media, Marketing & PR talk at University College Birmingham featured image

Back in June Hutchhouse was invited to give a talk at University College Birmingham. Having stumbled across our company, lecturer and Year Manager Jo Bates called us to ask if anyone would be interested in helping out with one of the workshops taking place in November by giving an hour-long presentation.

As part of their course, students studying at the School of Hospitality, Food and Events faculty pulled together to organise the convention. This gave them the opportunity to invite guest speakers to the University and discuss life after higher education. Naturally we were honoured to have been asked so we sent @benhutchins – our Creative Director – to do the talking.

Responsive web design webinar notes

Written by: jstiles

August 28, 2012

Responsive web design webinar notes featured image

Thanks to all those that attended the responsive web design webinar on Tuesday the 28th of August 2012. It was great to share our understanding and experience of responsive design, thanks for your questions and feedback. We’ll be incorporating some of them in an updated seminar.

Are you catering for the needs of your mobile customers?

Written by: Annette Taylor

June 27, 2012

Are you losing potential from your website because some visitors are turned away by a user experience that does not suit the mobile web? This is a question that nearly every website owner should be asking themselves since a study conducted by Google and Ipsos found that as many as 79% of top advertisers do not have mobile optimised landing pages.  By not being one of those people your site will be in the top 21% amongst mobile users and the rewards are huge as we will discuss.

Who needs Flash? Javascript is King!

Written by: jstiles

December 7, 2011

Who needs Flash? Javascript is King! featured image

Once upon a time in a galaxy far far away, Flash™ used to rule the roost. If you wanted to achieve anything ‘sexy’ in terms of animation or user interaction then you were more or less forced down the Flash™ route. I’m happy to say that things moved on a while ago with improvements in how browser’s handle Javascript and the emergence of libraries such as jQuery. Flash has quietly slipped away.

Creative Design meets Creative Development

Written by: Mitchell Renton

August 18, 2011

Creative Design meets Creative Development featured image

The introduction of HTML5 and CSS3 means less design restrictions, more interaction and a better user experience . The bridge between design and development is diminishing and this can only be a good thing for the web design community.

But, let’s not get carried away just yet. We’re still very much aware of the existence of prehistoric browsers such as IE6. Unfortunately, we can’t ignore them just yet but thankfully there are tools out there that will make these browsers play nicely.

Tips on choosing the best web design agency

Written by: jstiles

July 8, 2011

Tips on choosing the best web design agency featured image

When you first set out employing an agency to design and build your website, there are many factors which come into play. We have tried to come up with a few pointers on choosing a web design agency and some warning signs to look out for.

Like most industries there are varying levels of competency and skill and – like much of the IT industry – web design and especially web development is scattered with jargon. There are definite pitfalls and signals which you should take heed of and certain traits that should be expected and applauded.

Good web design agency traits

  • The project management team can answer your questions clearly
  • Jargon and technical detail are kept to minimum and non-technical explanations
  • The agency are upfront and transparent about their costs (both project costs and any ongoing costs)
  • The web design process is clearly explained
  • Clear milestones are provided with regard to the overall web design and development process
  • The agency can quickly produce examples of work which is relevant to your project
  • Any third party technology or input (if any) to the project is made clear
  • The ongoing website support process is explained
  • Hosting requirements are considered and options are discussed
  • Clear points of contact are established

Poor web design agency behaviour to look out for

  • Points made by the agency are littered with technical details and jargon and don’t make sense to you
  • There are elements of the approach which lock you into using the web design agency (such as hosting agreements)
  • Questions are not answered sufficiently or are skirted over
  • The agency’s approach and processes are not explained
  • The agency mask costs in technical jargon and do not explain the reasoning for them sufficiently (this can be especially true with regards to Search Engine Optimisation – there another blog post in the making on that one)
  • You get the sense that the agency don’t understand your requirements. Each project is different and a ‘boiler plate’ (one size fits all) approach by the agency will make them money but won’t produce a site inline with your expectations.

What you should ask a web design agency

  • Ask for examples of previous work including demonstrations if required
  • Ballpark figures (or hunches) are easy enough to give with small amounts of information. These can easily rule out (or in) whether an agency will fit your budget and save time on both accounts
  • Find out what the company recommends with regard to content management platforms (if applicable) and search engine marketing (social media, web copywriting, web page optimisation)
  • Ask about the level of web accessibility the agency adhere to by default
  • Discover the processes the agency will follow
  • How much contact does the agency need from you?
  • Find out about the key project milestones and what they mean in relation to any proposed timescales

Summary

Most of us will end up working with people we like, but that won’t guarantee a successful project. You should never be afraid to ask a question, even if your questions seem trivial. Any agency worth their salt will take their time to explain their proposal and make sure you fully understand their processes and approach,  without using over complicated technical jargon. Just like any other industry, you are employing experts, so you need to trust their judgement, but beforehand, they need to earn your trust.

Hutchhouse (London) move to a new office

Written by: jstiles

April 19, 2011

Hutchhouse (London) move to a new office featured image

Just a quick post to let you all know that the London team have moved to new offices. We took a considerable hike to our new location… right across the road! Seriously, we were able to walk our stuff across the street. Very handy.

So no great change of location then, we’re still in Soho and approximately 30 yards from our old pad. We’re really happy to be here. We’ve got windows, a lift AND a view! The new address is:

Hutchhouse @ Media Junction
2 Archer Street
Soho
London
W1D 7AZ

5 web design techniques to wow your users

Written by: jstiles

April 7, 2011

5 web design techniques to wow your users featured image

It’s easy to forget some of the impressive, interactive ways in which to wow your users when you are designing a website. Designing in Photoshop or Fireworks (or whatever you design in) does not always give you the scope to easily illustrate how the site actually works, how it feels to use and how to introduce creative elements of interactive design. That’s why we always try to identify ways in which to display and present content and functionality outside of the ‘standard’ toolset of any website designer.

Here are 5 techniques which we love to use:
Content Carousels

Content Carousels

Presenting information in a linear way presents problems. It takes up website real estate (page space to me and you) and can often make content look dreary and text heavy. Using a javascript carousel is a great way to combat this. You can present multiple slides of content which rotate automatically and can be controlled from the user interface. A good example of this is our own homepage hero banner. This is a great device for drawing attention to new content or new goals, it solves a number of layout issues and looks great!

Parallax Backgrounds

Parallax Backgrounds

Background images and illustrations positioned behind your site are great if they are used properly. They provide depth, creativity and a visual richness that a pattern or colour will never achieve. But why not take them one step further. Using a technique known as Parallax you can make the background interact with user controls. Backgrounds can move on top of one another or seem to follow you down the page when the user scrolls or simply moves his/her mouse. It’s an excellent way to provide a subtle but sophisticated effect.

Web Font Rendering

Web Font Rendering

Using a variety of different methods  we can now use many more fonts (in a web safe way) than have been previously available, meaning that sites can be ‘on-brand’, more original and less ‘standard’ in appearance. There are very few web safe fonts (Arial, Verdana, Georgia, Times New Roman, Courier to name most of them) which has limited the typography used on websites considerably. Before web font rendering services like Typekit became available if you wanted web safe fonts then you used these. Now we can utilise thousands of fonts and get creative with Typography in a similar manner to that of print designers.

Text Shadows

Text Shadows

There are a multitude of new styles available with CSS3, however one of the best and useful is ‘text-shadow’. This allows you to specify a drop shadow on system text. Most browsers support it (notably Internet Explorer does not yet support it – even with IE8) and it provides the ability to add extra depth and creativity to site typography. No more flat fonts with boring contrast…

CSS Image Manipulation

CSS Image Manipulation

Much of the time in order to make you website look fantastic we rely on well thought out and manipulated imagery. however by using techniques with transparent PNGs and new CSS3 values such as gradients we can now perform a lot of the visual ‘rules’ to imagery within the site templates. A typical example would be on a hero image (an attention seeking leaderboard type banner at the top of the page). You could spend your time in photoshop applying whatever effects you like to that image – but more than likely you won’t, so we apply the rules such as any gradients or floating, transparent text areas using images and CSS. It means less work for the content editor and more consistency from the designer’s perspective.

If you like what we are saying here and feel we could help with your web project then please do get in touch..

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We are looking for a top class Front End Developer!

Talented?
Ambitious?
Experienced?
We are looking for a strong Front End Developer to join our team!

We are looking for a top class Front End Developer! featured image

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