Upgrading McGill Executive Institute from Drupal 7 to Drupal 10

Upgrading McGill Executive Institute from Drupal 7 to Drupal 10

By Charles Matte
Upgrading McGill Executive Institute from Drupal 7 to Drupal 10

In the world of Drupal development, there's nothing quite like the satisfaction of a successful Drupal upgrade. At Monarq, we have a knack for transforming outdated Drupal 7 sites into shiny, new Drupal 10 experiences. These migrations are crucial as Drupal 7 reaches its end-of-life soon, and we need to make sure that our clients' websites remain secure, relevant, and take advantage of the latest features. It’s not just a simple update; it’s an opportunity to enhance the site’s performance, security, and functionality.

Let me take you through our latest project for the McGill Executive Institute. This site, part of the Desautels Faculty of Management, offers a wealth of programs, webinars, and articles. Migrating this site from Drupal 7 to Drupal 10 was no small feat, but it was an exciting challenge that our team embraced wholeheartedly.

We kicked things off by focusing on usability and content management. The original site was a bit of a labyrinth, maintained by a highly technically knowledgeable webmaster who used extensive code within the rich text editor. This setup made it very difficult for regular site admins trying to make updates. We revolutionized this by implementing a system of page organization using “Sections and Components”. Our Section and Component feature simplifies website content editing, which allows our clients to easily create and modify pages according to their preferences. The website is broken down into manageable elements, allowing users to mix and match different layouts, content blocks, and design elements to achieve their desired look and feel. Now, any content editor can easily create and customize content using complex layout options. This intuitive approach means McGill Executive Institute site managers can effortlessly keep the site fresh and engaging.

Accessibility compliance was next on our list, ensuring the site meets WCAG 2.2 standards. Accessibility isn’t just a checkbox for us; it’s about making the web usable for everyone, including those with disabilities. You can learn more about our commitment to accessibility in this previous article.

We didn’t stop there. We also provided specialized Drupal hosting through Platform.sh, our trusted partner, ensuring the site runs smoothly and reliably and is easy to keep up to date with security releases.

The Drupal 7 to Drupal 10 upgrade allowed us to preserve the valuable content and features built over the years while making the site far easier to update. Our custom layout tools enforce a consistent design while offering flexibility in page creation.

Working with McGill University has been a rewarding journey. Our history with McGill has taught us a lot about collaborating with various departments within a single institution. We’ve had the privilege of working on numerous McGill projects, from upgrading the Drupal 7 site to Drupal 10 for the McGill Executive Institute and their catering event system, Fortuna, to designing and building a brand-new Drupal 10 site for the McGill Institute of Genomic Medicine. Since 2020, we've also been supporting the LeJames.ca Drupal 7-based e-commerce bookstore. Each project has been a unique adventure, contributing to our deep understanding of McGill's needs.

Our experience with McGill is just one example of our many successful Drupal 7 upgrades. We also upgraded from Drupal 7 to Drupal 10 the American Library Association's online commerce site, as well as Shelter Cluster, Red Cross's document repository and finally Poetry In Voice, a site that promotes poetry for Canadian students and runs online recitation contests. Each project is unique, and we tailor our approach to meet the specific needs of our clients. Our commitment to excellence ensures that every upgrade not only meets but exceeds expectations, delivering powerful web software and secure, high-performing, and user-friendly websites.