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T44u 2015, imperial college
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Rfp to launch

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  1. 1. HighEdWeb Michigan A New Content Management System: From RFP to Launch in 12 Months
  2. 2. Your Speakers Holly LaRose-Roenicke, Assistant Director Web Communications Aaron Maturen, Programmer Web Technologies (ITS) Jason Swackhamer, Director Web Communications
  3. 3. About SVSU • Enrollment: 10,500+ – UG: 8,700+ – Grad: 1,200+ • 77% full-time students • 70% under 25 • 70% of incoming freshman live on campus • Alumni: 38,000+ • Regional institution with some out state and international students • Founded in 1963 (50th Anniversary)
  4. 4. Our Organization President Academic Affairs Administration & Business Affairs ITS Web Programming Training Team Enrollment Management Web Communications Student Affairs Public Affairs
  5. 5. First . . . A little history • Began decentralized Web management in 1994 • Typo 3 was second CMS system since 1994 – Complicated to manage – Lack of consistency and accountability – Dependence on IT for providing functionality • CMS compromised Superbowl Sunday, 2011
  6. 6. Pre-RFP Situation Analysis • Programming staff — number and % of time • Budget — open source isn’t free — making the case for $$ • Users — who will be using daily • Workflow — levels of users, approvers Key Factors in Needs Assessment
  7. 7. Web Maintenance Web Communications Manages oversight of website as a whole; sets website standards; Advises departments on social media strategy; Implements and trains editors on content management system. IT Web Programming supports University departments through customized-programming requests; Networking supports the infrastructure to support the network and servers Content Editors Reviews content with owners annually, acts as department gatekeeper; Ensures pages meet the University’s standards in terms of design and best practice; Attends Terminal Four training. University Communications Sets graphic standards and message themes for University. Provides images in centralized repository
  8. 8. Needs Assessment aka, What Does the CMS Need To Do?  Enterprise System — higher ed customers  Decoupled publishing — so we won’t loose live content again! Easy to Use — Almost as easy as MS Word  Easy to Create Templates — flexible, easy for developers
  9. 9. The RFP • A COMPLEX MONSTER — 162 attributes questionnaire, 19 pgs! • Targeted Vendors — enterprise, higher ed • Purchasing Led — managed communication • Time — gave a month for response due to complexity
  10. 10. Selection Process RFP Sent to 15 Vendors RFP Responses Due 30 days later 5 Responded RFPs Scored and Ranked based on 119 criteria, price Cross-Campus Committee: Demos from 3, selects Terminal Four Cross Campus Committee: low, mid and high level web editors, web programming, web communications, training
  11. 11. Project Planning Decisions, Decisions • Design (templates, CSS) • Sitemap • Migration Planning –All at once or phased? –Who does it? • Launch (how, timing)
  12. 12. Evaluate Current Website Planning for Migration (Typo3 to T4)  6,102 Pages  Find patterns for categorizing content  Create rules for finding content to import into templates  Never logged in to Typo3 back end
  13. 13. Set up new Environment Terminal Four (T4)  Create new templates for migrating content into  Port over CSS and page styles
  14. 14. Transform Hierarchy Build New Site Structure  Used excel to define the new structure for the hierarchy  Used python to create the pages in new CMS and keep a reference of where they were in old CMS Tip: Use this as opportunity to fix site structure (nested sites)
  15. 15. Content Migration Import Content  Army of minions  Created an application based on the new hierarchy to assign pages with links to old page and new page  Web crawler using python and a hierarchy  Automatically imported about 3,100 pages…
  16. 16. Media Asset Migration  Media had to initially be imported by a minion into T4  All of the links to images, PDFs, and files had to be relinked manually Tip: All media will need to be imported and linked.
  17. 17. Quality Control  Minions were responsible for checking their assigned pages  Web Communications also spot checked pages Tip: Have content owners check their content and website before launch
  18. 18. Training for Admins “Train the Trainer” • Training from vendor • Training done on “training accounts”, not live sites • Began converting our own websites
  19. 19. Content Editor Training Required for Login • Login access given at end of training - no exceptions • Conducted using “training accounts”, not live sites • Conducted (25) 90-minute trainings in 6 months, training 145 people • Any changes made to live sites between conversion and training were done by minions, but from training to launch were their responsibility to update
  20. 20. Tips To Training Success • Holding back login access • Encourage users from same department to go together • Improved documentation – ask vendors to see if they have documentation to build from • Empower users with choices and tools to improve websites • Continuous help “T4 Tuesdays”
  21. 21. Redefining Roles Web Communications (Content) • Meet with every department annually – Review content for accuracy – Set goals/ priorities – Review analytics – Provide “report card” • Assist Content Editors • Provide training • Administer access rights
  22. 22. Redefining Roles Web Technologies (Programming) • Administer template improvements and technical aspects of CMS support • New process for project requests – New content templates – Forms – Special programming • Clearinghouse for all online forms • Cross training within department
  23. 23. Lessons Learned Have a Communications Plan • Set expectations • Squelch the rumors • Communicate process, timing • Consider a content freeze
  24. 24. Lesson Learned Conduct a Crisis Plan • Brainstorm worst-case scenarios and solutions  Search broken  Links to all media files broken  Server space maxing out
  25. 25. Lessons Learned Know URL Structure Tip: Try not to change it! • Legacy Links are persistent — Scheduled Emails — Google — Bookmarks • At minimum, have a great 404 page
  26. 26. Lessons Learned Anticipate What’ll Break (Forms) • Some forms were processed by old CMS  These broke • Some were “included” with php on page  These broke • Some were external links  Worked! Tip: Include forms in migration schedule
  27. 27. Lessons Learned Triple-Check Server Setup  If you don’t want a phone call at 4 a.m., make sure that there is enough space on your server for the website.
  28. 28. Lessons Learned In Summary: 3 Key Takeaways  Even though we moved fast, there were times that could have moved even faster because in the end, we needed three more months  Search engines take time to crawl  Each site should have been reviewed and signed off for accuracy by editors during the training process
  29. 29. 12 Months- RFP to Launch - Selection - Editor Training RFP Responses Due! Vendor Notified -Project Planning, Install, -Development - Content Migration - Quality Review OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUNE JULY AUG - Selection - Editor Training RFP Responses Due! Vendor Notified -Project Planning, Install, -Development - Content Migration - Quality Review SEPT OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUNE JULY AUG Selection Editor Training RFP Responses Due! Vendor Notified Project Planning, Install, Development Content Migration - Quality Review Launch!
  30. 30. Lessons Learned In Summary: 3 Key Takeaways  Even though we moved fast, there were times that could have moved even faster because in the end, we needed three more months  Search engines take time to crawl  Each site should have been reviewed and signed off for accuracy by editors during the training process
  31. 31. Questions, Comments, Discussion Holly LaRose-Roenicke, Assistant Director Web Communications hmlarose@svsu.edu Aaron Maturen, Programmer Web Technologies (ITS) atmature@svsu.edu Jason Swackhamer, Director Web Communications jjswack1@svsu.edu @jswacky Slides available via Tweet Deck:
  1. 1. HighEdWeb Michigan A New Content Management System: From RFP to Launch in 12 Months
  2. 2. Your Speakers Holly LaRose-Roenicke, Assistant Director Web Communications Aaron Maturen, Programmer Web Technologies (ITS) Jason Swackhamer, Director Web Communications
  3. 3. About SVSU • Enrollment: 10,500+ – UG: 8,700+ – Grad: 1,200+ • 77% full-time students • 70% under 25 • 70% of incoming freshman live on campus • Alumni: 38,000+ • Regional institution with some out state and international students • Founded in 1963 (50th Anniversary)
  4. 4. Our Organization President Academic Affairs Administration & Business Affairs ITS Web Programming Training Team Enrollment Management Web Communications Student Affairs Public Affairs
  5. 5. First . . . A little history • Began decentralized Web management in 1994 • Typo 3 was second CMS system since 1994 – Complicated to manage – Lack of consistency and accountability – Dependence on IT for providing functionality • CMS compromised Superbowl Sunday, 2011
  6. 6. Pre-RFP Situation Analysis • Programming staff — number and % of time • Budget — open source isn’t free — making the case for $$ • Users — who will be using daily • Workflow — levels of users, approvers Key Factors in Needs Assessment
  7. 7. Web Maintenance Web Communications Manages oversight of website as a whole; sets website standards; Advises departments on social media strategy; Implements and trains editors on content management system. IT Web Programming supports University departments through customized-programming requests; Networking supports the infrastructure to support the network and servers Content Editors Reviews content with owners annually, acts as department gatekeeper; Ensures pages meet the University’s standards in terms of design and best practice; Attends Terminal Four training. University Communications Sets graphic standards and message themes for University. Provides images in centralized repository
  8. 8. Needs Assessment aka, What Does the CMS Need To Do?  Enterprise System — higher ed customers  Decoupled publishing — so we won’t loose live content again! Easy to Use — Almost as easy as MS Word  Easy to Create Templates — flexible, easy for developers
  9. 9. The RFP • A COMPLEX MONSTER — 162 attributes questionnaire, 19 pgs! • Targeted Vendors — enterprise, higher ed • Purchasing Led — managed communication • Time — gave a month for response due to complexity
  10. 10. Selection Process RFP Sent to 15 Vendors RFP Responses Due 30 days later 5 Responded RFPs Scored and Ranked based on 119 criteria, price Cross-Campus Committee: Demos from 3, selects Terminal Four Cross Campus Committee: low, mid and high level web editors, web programming, web communications, training
  11. 11. Project Planning Decisions, Decisions • Design (templates, CSS) • Sitemap • Migration Planning –All at once or phased? –Who does it? • Launch (how, timing)
  12. 12. Evaluate Current Website Planning for Migration (Typo3 to T4)  6,102 Pages  Find patterns for categorizing content  Create rules for finding content to import into templates  Never logged in to Typo3 back end
  13. 13. Set up new Environment Terminal Four (T4)  Create new templates for migrating content into  Port over CSS and page styles
  14. 14. Transform Hierarchy Build New Site Structure  Used excel to define the new structure for the hierarchy  Used python to create the pages in new CMS and keep a reference of where they were in old CMS Tip: Use this as opportunity to fix site structure (nested sites)
  15. 15. Content Migration Import Content  Army of minions  Created an application based on the new hierarchy to assign pages with links to old page and new page  Web crawler using python and a hierarchy  Automatically imported about 3,100 pages…
  16. 16. Media Asset Migration  Media had to initially be imported by a minion into T4  All of the links to images, PDFs, and files had to be relinked manually Tip: All media will need to be imported and linked.
  17. 17. Quality Control  Minions were responsible for checking their assigned pages  Web Communications also spot checked pages Tip: Have content owners check their content and website before launch
  18. 18. Training for Admins “Train the Trainer” • Training from vendor • Training done on “training accounts”, not live sites • Began converting our own websites
  19. 19. Content Editor Training Required for Login • Login access given at end of training - no exceptions • Conducted using “training accounts”, not live sites • Conducted (25) 90-minute trainings in 6 months, training 145 people • Any changes made to live sites between conversion and training were done by minions, but from training to launch were their responsibility to update
  20. 20. Tips To Training Success • Holding back login access • Encourage users from same department to go together • Improved documentation – ask vendors to see if they have documentation to build from • Empower users with choices and tools to improve websites • Continuous help “T4 Tuesdays”
  21. 21. Redefining Roles Web Communications (Content) • Meet with every department annually – Review content for accuracy – Set goals/ priorities – Review analytics – Provide “report card” • Assist Content Editors • Provide training • Administer access rights
  22. 22. Redefining Roles Web Technologies (Programming) • Administer template improvements and technical aspects of CMS support • New process for project requests – New content templates – Forms – Special programming • Clearinghouse for all online forms • Cross training within department
  23. 23. Lessons Learned Have a Communications Plan • Set expectations • Squelch the rumors • Communicate process, timing • Consider a content freeze
  24. 24. Lesson Learned Conduct a Crisis Plan • Brainstorm worst-case scenarios and solutions  Search broken  Links to all media files broken  Server space maxing out
  25. 25. Lessons Learned Know URL Structure Tip: Try not to change it! • Legacy Links are persistent — Scheduled Emails — Google — Bookmarks • At minimum, have a great 404 page
  26. 26. Lessons Learned Anticipate What’ll Break (Forms) • Some forms were processed by old CMS  These broke • Some were “included” with php on page  These broke • Some were external links  Worked! Tip: Include forms in migration schedule
  27. 27. Lessons Learned Triple-Check Server Setup  If you don’t want a phone call at 4 a.m., make sure that there is enough space on your server for the website.
  28. 28. Lessons Learned In Summary: 3 Key Takeaways  Even though we moved fast, there were times that could have moved even faster because in the end, we needed three more months  Search engines take time to crawl  Each site should have been reviewed and signed off for accuracy by editors during the training process
  29. 29. 12 Months- RFP to Launch - Selection - Editor Training RFP Responses Due! Vendor Notified -Project Planning, Install, -Development - Content Migration - Quality Review OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUNE JULY AUG - Selection - Editor Training RFP Responses Due! Vendor Notified -Project Planning, Install, -Development - Content Migration - Quality Review SEPT OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUNE JULY AUG Selection Editor Training RFP Responses Due! Vendor Notified Project Planning, Install, Development Content Migration - Quality Review Launch!
  30. 30. Lessons Learned In Summary: 3 Key Takeaways  Even though we moved fast, there were times that could have moved even faster because in the end, we needed three more months  Search engines take time to crawl  Each site should have been reviewed and signed off for accuracy by editors during the training process
  31. 31. Questions, Comments, Discussion Holly LaRose-Roenicke, Assistant Director Web Communications hmlarose@svsu.edu Aaron Maturen, Programmer Web Technologies (ITS) atmature@svsu.edu Jason Swackhamer, Director Web Communications jjswack1@svsu.edu @jswacky Slides available via Tweet Deck:

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