…And we’re okay with that. Being in web communications, we sometimes have to make decisions for the good of all–decisions that might create ire for some. It’s just part of the job.
Loyola has over 80 active sites right now, with thousands of pages behind those sites. We constantly (and by constant I mean on a daily basis) try to improve both the content on those pages and the methods of creating and delivering that content. Over the years we’ve had numerous training seminars conducted, processes developed, and procedures manuals created to support that effort. As a whole, I think the university has been largely successful with delivering a web presence that’s cohesive, progressive, and easy to navigate. We’ve seen evidence of this through our analytics, the usability study we conducted in the spring of 2011, and anecdotally through being consulted by other universities (hoping to set up shops like ours) and interviewed by the likes of University Business (articles here and here).
…But here’s the but
There are some major roadblocks to building a quality university website, however. We recently came across this article, which sums them up well:
Some of the issues the author, Michael Fienen, raises are things that we’ve already tackled (like coming up with and finessing strategies to keep key pieces of content updated), or are actively trying to solve (like dealing with turnover and educating our stakeholders on website evolution vs. website completion).
Another huge part of our jobs here in web communications is listening and questioning our current methods and practices. What frustrates you? What can we do better? Some of our best solutions have come from the ongoing dialogue we have with the campus community. If you’ve got something to share, we’d love to hear it!