Powering the future of one of Europe's largest unions

                          UNISON Join image

The Challenge

UNISON was one of the first unions in the world to accept online membership applications. But as the years passed and technologies evolved, its once trailblazing application process became dated and slow, especially on mobile devices. So, looking to meet the changing needs of a new generation of potential members, UNISON joined with White October to rethink its whole approach to online sign-ups.

Many hands on top of one another in a huddle
Unison trade union logo

Our Approach

This project went well beyond simply building a better online form. Together we mapped out what information definitely had to be collected at this stage and what could be gathered later.

From there we rapidly developed a prototype to test with UNISON stakeholders, then optimised this validated concept using best practice techniques to create a form that is responsive, technically rock-solid and GDPR-compliant.

The initial application is now seen as the first touchpoint of many – rather than as the only chance to find out as much as possible about an applicant – and the questions have been reworked to be as straightforward and honest as possible.

The impact

50 % faster sign up The average time taken to complete a UNISON membership application has more than halved – from 8 minutes to 3 minutes.

40 % more sign-ups The number of people who complete the form after starting it has increased by 40%. That could lead to an annual rise in revenue of more than £5m.

-12 Years The average age of new members has also fallen by 12 years – strengthening the union’s position for the future.

Guided by these initial successes, we’re now continuing to work together, looking to optimise the application process further and introduce a range of new features in 2018 and beyond.


  • User experience designers


  • Digital product development

Ready to talk?

Whether you want to create a new digital product or make an existing one even better, we'd love to talk it through.

Get in touch