Filming the ITV production Persuasion

Competitions for ITV

Sometimes we get asked to produce something much more than just a website. ITV asked us to produce a competitions engine that could handle 800 submissions a second!

In 2007, after a series of scandals regarding phone ins, the government brought in legislation over night a part of which said that if you ran a phone competition that was announced on television then you had to have a free online option.  ITV, one of the biggest media institutions in Britain, had been forced to deliver, very rapidly, an internally developed online competitions engine, but the speed with which the work had to be delivered had led to a system that - while effective - was far from ideal.

We were commissioned to deliver a new competitions engine to take over from the existing one which would run all competitions, applications and voting. The main goals we needed to achieve were a dramatically improved content editor experience, competitions code that could be delivered in multiple forms (inline frame, JavaScript or embeddable HTML), legacy support for old competition URLs, integration with the vote counting and winner selection software, and blistering performance.

We delivered a system ITV still use today, and despite the complexity of the solution, there is as little custom code as possible to ensure it is maintainable for the ITV team who took over running it when the system was delivered.

So it just goes to show, there's a lot more to Drupal than just making websites.