McGill Faculty of Law

A Searchable Database Shaping Labour Law


McGill Faculty of Law


2021 - 2022


  • Information Architecture
  • UX Design
  • UI Design
  • The Labour Law and Development Research Laboratory (LLDRL), housed at McGill’s Faculty of Law, aimed to update its Labour Law and Development Research Database (LLDRD). With an extensive collection of physical copies and photographs of crucial documents, they wanted a more straightforward method to access and search for them on their digital database. To achieve this, we introduced optical character recognition (OCR) technology, multilingual search, and an overall improved user experience.

    Why this project was a success

    • 1

      Implemented Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology for streamlined content processing and to facilitate document search.

    • 2

      Integrated ElasticSearch to give users the most efficient and relevant search results in multiple languages.

    • 3

      Modernized the user journey for faster loading and to cater to mobile-first experiences.

    Implementing OCR Technology & Optimizing Search

    LLDRL needed to modernize their database to make accessing, searching, and authenticating resources as simple as possible. The first step was implementing a third-party OCR technology to extract text from camera images and scanned documents making documents easily searchable while removing the need for manual data entry.

    With the implementation of Elasticsearch, users can easily conduct multilingual searches to locate documents in French, English, and Spanish. To simplify the organization and retrieval of information on a specific topic, users can create customized lists. Additionally, we incorporated automated categorization for quicker searches. To regulate access to specific resources, admins can assign varying levels of permission using roles.

    a desktop view of labour law and development research home page

    A Modernized Database Design

    With LLDRL looking for optimized navigation and a modern page layout, we designed the user experience to be minimal and lightweight, ensuring faster loading and streamlined searching. This benefits users who are accessing the database with slower internet speeds or through mobile devices.

    About the client

    The Labour Law and Development Research Laboratory (LLDRL), part of McGill University’s Faculty of Law in Montreal, comprises researchers, practitioners and students delving into the interactions between labour law and development. They contribute to the emergence of transnational labour law centred on the Global South and the “South of the North” where these workers are commonly excluded. The database serves as a platform for their members to share resources and strengthen the collaboration between researchers of the Global North and South.

    Like what you see?

    Don’t be shy, we’d love to hear from you.

    Contact us