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From award-winning campaigns to transforming the look and feel of such an important brand, here are some of the things we've been up to as the new creative communications partner for Evac+Chair.

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The Barques team isn't afraid of a challenge so when the global leader in emergency evacuation chairs for the mobility impaired, Evac+Chair, asked us to revise their training manuals we knew that they’d be in the safest of hands.

In the era of shoulder pads and Knight Rider, Evac+Chair launched their groundbreaking product onto the market. Complete with an incredibly detailed manual, 80’s inspired images and comprehensive diagrams it was a huge success. Fast forward 30 years and whilst the product is still saving lives, it was clear that the manual and its outdated images were at a critical point and desperately in need of 21st Century makeover.

Time to bring in the design team.

Evac+Chair training guides

The process 

When you purchase an Evac+Chair you go through one of two courses: an Operator Training Courses or a Key Trainer Course depending on if you are solely using the chair or intend to train others in using it. Both courses have an accompanying manual and training video that you take away with you when you’ve completed the training. 

Our team went to meet the trainers to see what it was all about. 

Visitors being shown how evacuation chairs are made and taking part in a demonstration that shows how an evacuation chair is used on a staircase

Katie said: “The trainers were engaging and really knowledgeable. We found that as a result, the chairs were effortless to use and you could see how easy it was to get someone potentially bigger and less mobile than you down the stairs and out of a building should there be a need.”

What did become apparent during the day though was how old fashioned and out of date the manuals that accompanied the training were. A great product and phenomenal training but the back up just wasn’t there and it was evidently frustrating for the trainers and for those trying to use the equipment.

We went away with this experience and the knowledge of what the trainers needed to elevate the product and got to work.

Evac+Chair operator guide inside spread

Creating a new and complex training manual

Firstly, we advised on the structure and the layout as well as the user experience of the manuals. Our advice was that there should now be five manuals that showcased the full range of chairs and their instructions for use.  

We also chose to not use photos as this had really dated the last versions. Instead, we created a family of illustrations that matched the facilitator and the user experience. These were checked by the trainers to ensure that they were correct and easy to follow.

Whilst keeping the well known branding, we also gave the manuals a Barques refresh to make them feel modern and user friendly.

Evac+Chair operator guide illustrationsEvac+Chair operator guide illustrationsEvac+Chair operator training guidesPeople sat round a table taking part in an Evac+Chair operator training session.

How a training manual can change a business

The new training manuals have made a massive difference to the business. By working with the trainers throughout they are more engaged and are loving that their job has been made easier to communicate. 

“We have been working with Barques for the last 9 months; one of the key projects we asked them to work on was the creation and development of our product training manuals. We deliver an average of 1250 training courses per annum to customers who have our Evac+Chair products. The training manuals we were using were out of date in terms of content and design. It was a project that had been ‘hot potatoed’ around the business for many years due to its complex nature.

We commissioned the team at Barques to work with us to deliver new training manuals for all our 5 courses that would not date, implement equality and diversity, were up to date in terms of content and included all the relevant legislative information. They made a complex project easy due to their commitment and dedication to work with our Marketing team to deliver a high-quality solution; from attending training courses themselves to ensure they understood the projects and how we deliver training, to the overall design and recommendation of the use of illustrations and simple step-by-step instructions, they have helped to deliver a range of manuals we are proud to give to delegates!

The overall designs are now timeless and can be easily adapted in the future as the Evac+Chair range develops. We have received a fantastic response from our Product Training Consultants and from our customers – thank you team Barques!”

Evacuation is a Risky Business

Since the roll out of the manual, we helped to develop an award-winning campaign around a White Paper called ‘Risky Business’. This sought to speak to business around the lack of knowledge and responsibility for wheelchair users or those that are temporarily disabled should a person need to be supported from the facility quickly and efficiently.

We developed messaging and campaign visuals which were rolled out on emails, banners and across social media.

We’re incredibly proud of how this looks and feels and are looking forward to working on the second phase of this campaign.

Evac+Chair animated campaign banner. "This chair saves lives. Make sure there's one in your building."

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