How to Rock the Planning Process for your Next Digital Library Web Project

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Does thinking about web projects for digital libraries make you feel as though you're trapped between a rock and a hard place? You will need to engage digital library partners and stakeholders; collect and analyze diverse data streams to understand use of your current digital library; define the roles of project team members; develop a comprehensive communication plan that serves a diverse audience; produce and disseminate project plans; and that’s all before web development of the project even begins! Talk about a Sisyphean task! Instead of pushing that rock up the mountain only to have it tumble back down again, join us for a presentation that highlights effective strategies for planning digital library web projects. This presentation will describe the planning process for the University of Houston Digital Library Redesign Project. We’ll tell you how we rocked it and we’ll point out where things got rocky. No matter what web project you are hoping to initiate for your digital library, you can be the project planning rock star.

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  • Define UHDL Redesign ProjectGive Context.  goals, stuff from project proposal
  • Communication
  • Define roles and responsibilities and project team - if we had structured the group differently, maybe we could have been more efficient, include developers earlier in process, or include special collections - representatives and sometimes we guess wrong.
  • Project timeline - evolved into a task listtook longer than we expected, over ambitious, be conscientious of time
  • data gatheringanalytics (click, usage)usabilityfocus groups - partners, stakeholders, users, etc.
  • This is from one of the data reports and showed how most users land on item pages, and other results most of those came from Google.
  • Heat map from Crazy Egg. Shows where people click on pages.
  • From a presentation to key stakeholders about findings and recommendations from user studies.
  • Collaborative decision making –meetings on topics in small chunkstook longer than we expected, over ambitious, be conscientious of time
  • wrote a document – 36 pages!!!writing process- nicci and I each wrote different sectionNicci – add pic of THE BINDERaudience of the documentsoliciting (or not) feedback – politics took longer than we expected, over ambitious, be conscientious of time
  • transition to another department - different audience (developers), different expectationsProject planning continues on
  • Realize that planning takes longer than development - recommend balance in planning and time managementEstablish project team, defining rolesCommunication - giving and receiving (feedback) – talk about blogManaging expectations
  • How to Rock the Planning Process for your Next Digital Library Web Project

    1. 1. How to Rock thePlanning Processfor your Next Digital LibraryWeb ProjectRachel Vacek and R. Niccole WestbrookTCDL 2013
    2. 2. University of HoustonDigital LibraryRedesign Project
    3. 3. Create Buy-In
    4. 4. Define Roles andResponsibilities of Teams
    5. 5. Project TeamCoordinator of Digital OperationsWeb Services CoordinatorHead of Web ServicesHead of Digital Services
    6. 6. Project LeadsCoordinator of Digital OperationsWeb Services Coordinator
    7. 7. Project LeadsCoordinator of Digital OperationsWeb Services CoordinatorHead of Web Services
    8. 8. Usability TeamCoordinator of Digital OperationsWeb Services Coordinator
    9. 9. Development TeamWeb Projects ManagerWeb Developer 3Web Developer 2Web Designer
    10. 10. Dream TeamWeb Projects ExpertDigital Library ExpertCuratorial ExpertUsability ExpertMetadata Expert
    11. 11. Create a ProjectTimeline
    12. 12. UHDL Redesign Timeline
    13. 13. Revised UHDL Redesign Timeline
    14. 14. Create a ProjectTimelineTask List
    15. 15. Gather Data
    16. 16. Plans & Reports• Stakeholder Interview Report• Project Plan• Usability Plan• Feature Brainstorming Report• Data Report• Usability Testing Reports• Developer Proposal
    17. 17. Collaborate onDecision Making
    18. 18. Collaborative Decision Making• Cut apart parts of project request andprioritized features as mandatory and desired• Frequent emails• Meetings at major advancements or whenmore discussion was needed
    19. 19. Write aProject Plan
    20. 20. Project Plan Challengesand Lessons Learned• Each Project Lead was responsible fordifferent sections• Used Google Docs– Kept track of versions/changes– Utilized commenting features• Developer involvement• Balance between creativity and exactspecifications
    21. 21. Transition toDevelopment
    22. 22. Different Understandings• Audiences for Project Plan• Scrum and agile product development• CONTENTdm• Ongoing usability testing• Feedback• Deadlines
    23. 23. Take Aways
    24. 24. Take Aways• Define roles and responsibilities whenestablishing a project team• Communicate• Manage expectations• Be realistic about time estimates
    25. 25. Photo Credits1. John Rudolph http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnrudolph/5865618809/2. University of Houston Digital Library http://digital.lib.uh.edu/3. randallo http://www.flickr.com/photos/randallo/4833097511/4. Martin Burns http://www.flickr.com/photos/martinb/29121316/5. Chuck Coker http://www.flickr.com/photos/caveman_92223/2692883227/6. Ziggy Stardust [citation]7. Klaus Hiltscher http://www.flickr.com/photos/khiltscher/3209570557/8. Jim Summaria http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mick_Jagger_and_Ron_Wood_-_Rolling_Stones_-_1975.jpg9. Brent Pearson http://www.flickr.com/photos/brentbat/1557036097/10. Steve Lacy http://www.flickr.com/photos/steve_lacy/140153319/11. Dom W http://www.flickr.com/photos/dom_w/1508297891/
    26. 26. Rachel VacekHead of Web Servicesrevacek@uh.eduR. Niccole WestbrookCoordinator of Digital Operationsrnwestbrook@uh.eduUH Digital Library Redesignhttp://weblogs.lib.uh.edu/uhdlredesign/UH Digital Libraryhttp://digital.lib.uh.edu/(New design will go live in June 2013)TCDL 2013Thanks!

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