Extreme Website Makeover
After a year-and-a-half long development process, the SCC website sports a new look. Why was the redesign necessary? We had issues with out-of-date content, a need for better protection against hackers, and the desire for a fresh look. There were two main objectives of developing the new website: to create an interactive site that would serve as a marketing tool and to redesign the look, navigation, layout, and content of the existing website to make it more engaging and user-friendly.
For many, a new look to the website is something the college has desperately needed for some time. The project was launched officially in fall 2008 although a website redesign had been under consideration for some time before then. Meeting faculty and staff requests, the new website is loaded with useful features as well as a more interactive graphic user interface. The most obvious new features include:
· An up-to-date college directory with links to faculty and staff e-mail and websites
· Easy user-controlled page deletion and restoration
· An enhanced page and site creation and editing tool set
· Use of District account to login and perform web updates
· Ability to upload multiple files and manage personal document and picture libraries
· Enhanced features such as lists, surveys, RSS feeds, discussion forums, Wikis, and event calendars
· A robust search engine that supports document and page crawling as well as DYM (Did You Mean . . .) and best hits when searching
The project was complicated due to the volume of pages on the college website as well as the variety of users. Many people, departments, and programs had pages on the college website, and decisions had to be made about how the new pages would look and how they would be structured. New software was purchased to run the site. Web Task Force members and District ITS staff worked collaboratively in addressing the objectives of the redesign and the deployment of the new site.
A soft launch of the redesigned website was unveiled in early spring to allow interested faculty and staff to preview the website, submit comments, and report problems and errors.
The Web Task Force members have been busy since the soft launch fielding questions and comments about the new website, and they have put in long hours dealing with the feedback. The Web Task Force has also kept the SCC community updated with the redevelopment progress. More than 100 individuals have attended training sessions that were conducted to assist the faculty and staff with adapting to the new software and updating their pages and sites.
In addition to the new front-end design and enhanced features, the college website required the college to work closely with the highly talented and skilled District ITS team to implement the backend functionality and content management system.
If you want training on how to update your existing website or how to create a new site, contact Don Busché (firstname.lastname@example.org). As the Web Task Force moves forward with the new website, please don't be shy: let us know what you think we might do to make the site better. Or, if you're really interested, join the Web Task Force and become an active participant in overseeing the continued improvement of the SCC Website.
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