Please note: this is an update of an earlier blog post and includes information about the new website launch date and dates for the internal Web content review period.
The new website will launch on Monday, August 5. In advance of the launch date, faculty and staff will have any opportunity to review their department webpages and provide the Web team with any content changes during the period of July 10-24. Content changes will be implemented during this period and between July 24 and the August 5 launch (and on an ongoing basis post-launch). All faculty and staff will receive an email from Doug Minor, director of digital communications, on July 10 with the Web address to use during the Web content review period and process to follow in submitting content change. The site preview URL should not be shared publicly at this time and will change once we launch the new website.
Requesting Web Content Changes
- Content change requests should be submitted through the the online request form that can be found at the very top of the preview website (area in gold, labeled as “Web Content Review – Requesting Changes”)
- Content change requests may also be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org
- If you have specific questions or concerns, they can be submitted through the online form, by email, or by calling 704-894-2242
Requested content changes will be prioritized based on importance and need.
Web Redesign Progress
We have made significant progress on the site in the last three months and we are anxious to show the result of our work.
- Thousands of pages have been migrated into the redesigned site since March, with a significant portion of this happening in April, May, and June
- The new website has been moved from the development server with our Web partner BarkleyREI to Davidson’s own Web servers (this happened on June 7)
- We have added many new images to the site, including top of page mastheads, right column callouts, and other areas (photo work will be ongoing)
Our Work is Not Done When We Launch (it’s Ongoing)
When we launch, we get the site to the point where we feel comfortable with it’s launch. Our work will never be truly finished, but most of the remaining work on the redesign project will continue through the summer and fall 2013.
Additionally, after launch we will be continuing to add new features and functionality, news stories, profiles, photos, mastheads with captions, and right column callouts.
Department Website Content Meetings (Continued)
As you can imagine, going from 19,000 CMS pages to around 4,000 pages has been a Herculean effort and something we have done in less than 14 months. In reality it’s only been in the last six to eight months, since most of our part-time content writers and freelance staff only came on board with us in the late fall and winter.
We have not had an opportunity to meet with every academic and administrative department on campus (we’ve met and spoken with a great number of departments). It’s not an oversight, but due more to the limited amount of time available over the past two months as we push forward toward launch. We are making our best effort to migrate over existing department content to the new website for departments and fully expect that departments/offices will want to make additional changes and edits. We will do our best to accommodate all requests and work with departments post-launch to update and make your requested changes as quickly as we can.
Content Management System Training
We will begin offering new group-based CMS training starting in mid-to-late August. CMS training dates will be announced on this blog and on Inside Davidson.
Since we’ve simplified the CMS interface for content authors, these CMS trainings will cover more than just how to create and edit pages, but discuss the new CMS workflow, writing and preparing content for the Web, considerations for mobile visitors, sizing images, adding meta data to attachments, accessibility considerations, and following Web standards and best practices. A new CMS support site will be developed and launched over the fall.