The Right Approach to a New Campus Website

I am very pleased with the re-launch of Yes–I know there were issues of slowness with the site which had to do with servers, but overall the launch went about as smooth as these things can go.  That is why we only do it once every few years.  It is a disruption, but a necessary one in order to keep pace with the way the world wide web works.

We are collecting all of the user feedback on the site, and evaluating any further changes.  Please keep sending us your comments about your experience on the new site.

So much time, energy, effort, sweat, tears–you name it–went into the creation of the new website.  It’s only Phase One, so there is still much to do.  The rest of the phases will roll out at different points during the next year.

On a related note, I have to give credit where credit is due.

I am impressed (and a tad jealous) by the innovative, thoughtful approach the University of Michigan-Dearborn is taking to their website redesign project.  They are taking the brave, bold step of throwing out the old paradigm of university websites and daring to do something that is not only different, but is actually what users want and need.

That is revolutionary.

Beyond the approach, they are doing something else that is admirable:  they are making an investment of dollars and resources into the project.  Smart, smart, smart.  Their new initiative is even being noticed by such magazines as Fast Company because it is such a new way for a university to approach website re-design work.

I am eager to watch the UM-Dearborn web process unfold, and to learn what they will discover.  Who knows?  Maybe they will change the web model for all of higher education.  Now that’s being a leader and best.

Jen Hogan