There are two major events happening with the Extension web upgrade project this week that are of interest to many of you: events and a demo of county pages.

Events

We are making final adjustments to the “events” content type, ensuring that events display properly in various places on the new site, and updating the quick-start guide with instructions. We anticipate this will take 1-2 days. We will notify content team leaders directly “events” are ready for use.

County pages demo

On Friday, May 4, 2-2:30 p.m., we invite you to join a webinar focused on the county/combined station pages in our new web presence. We will record the WebEx session and share/post the link for those who can’t attend live.

Connection info:

  • WebEx link (same as the link for our regular Friday office hours/open lab help sessions)
  • To connect to audio by phone dial: +1-415-655-0002 (US Toll), access code: 929 325 368

Audience:

County leaders, office managers, current county and combined station site managers

Purpose:

  • Review design, content, functionality of county/combined station presence in new website
  • Provide “getting started” resources for site managers to manage county-specific, non-program content and pages

Background:

  • Because county/combined station pages pull much information dynamically from other content in the system (e.g., staff directory, map, statewide programs, educational content from content teams), that information needed to be in the site before it would make sense to design or review county pages.
  • Content teams have been entering content since early March, and events will be available this week. There is now enough content in the system to allow us all to have a better sense of how county pages are taking shape.

Welcome, Michele!

This week, please help us extend a warm welcome to Michele Scheib, who started work as content strategist for OSU Extension on Monday.

  • Content team leaders are welcome to “drop in” (virtually or in person) and meet Michele during office hours/open labs, beginning this Friday.
  • Content teams will also begin to see Michele copied on email responses, as a way for her to come up to speed on the project and learn about our content.
  • Michele will join EESC director Jennifer Alexander at the May 8 OSU Extension Regional Operations meeting for introductions and a website update with program leaders and regional directors.

Updates and next steps

  • Reminder: May 29 is the target “launch week” for phase 1 of our new Extension web presence. Content teams should continue to focus on content entry, consulting with the project team as needed.
  • Cool development: Our site now automatically creates a thumbnail image from the first page of uploaded documents. We are exploring options to do this also for online resources (i.e., links to external websites), but for now content owners should continue to upload a thumbnail image for these manually.
  • Coming soon:
    • We anticipate releasing the “events” content type to content teams this week. We will notify content team leaders directly when this is available.
    • Pending successful launch and early use of the “events” content type, we anticipate being able to re-engage with office managers and county leaders to review county office landing pages next week. We will communicate directly with those groups about a webinar opportunity.

Over the last week, we’ve made some updates the content types. We have replaced the “resources link” content type with three new content options:

  • Educational document: This is where PDF, Word, PowerPoint, or Excel documents that contain general interest educational material can be uploaded.
  • Online resource: This is for linking to educational material located on another site.
  • Program resource: This is for adding documents or links for a specific program (e.g. registration forms, program reports, policies and procedures, etc).

Any content that was previously a “resource link” has been moved to the new appropriate content type.

These changes are based on our ongoing conversations with content teams and our collective learning experience as more content is added and we identify common issues and challenges.

See links below for more details.

New sections in the Quick Start Guide:

We encourage content teams to review these updates before entering more content this week. Please contact us with any questions or join us during office hours.

Fun fact: The current OSU Extension website turned seven last week and was initially launched April 6, 2011.

Greetings OSU Extension colleagues!

This week we share an update on the overall project timeline and a few more resources that will be helpful to content teams.

Project timeline

Based on input we’ve received from program leaders and content teams–and on our project team’s remaining priority tasks–we have set the week of May 29 as the target “launch week” for phase 1 of our new Extension web presence.

This timeline allows approximately seven more weeks for content entry, programming, and design. It also provides about a month for our new content strategist to come onboard, learn, and contribute.

For now:

  • Content teams should continue to focus on content entry, consulting with the project team as needed.
  • The project team will be focusing on the highest-priority design and programming tasks, and on priority content that we manage.
  • We will consult with content teams who manage program sites that will not “live” in the new Extension website at phase 1 launch, to confirm short-term and transition plans for those sites.
  • After the “event” content type is available, we will re-engage with office managers and county leaders to review county office landing pages. We will do this as soon as possible, but at minimum two weeks before launch.

Resource updates

Colleagues,

We’re happy to announce that Michele Scheib will join the EESC team as content strategist for OSU Extension. Her first day will be Monday, April 23.

Michele joins us from Eugene, Oregon. She most recently worked for Mobility International USA, and had a lead role in developing and implementing a new organizational website in Drupal and new database in Salesforce. She brings experience in web content development, analytics, usability, and accessibility.

Michele will collaborate with EESC colleagues and our program/topic-based content teams to plan and manage content and associated processes for OSU Extension’s online presence.

In her first few weeks, we will work to arrange opportunities for her to meet with content team leaders. For now, please continue to contact the project team directly with questions about the Extension web upgrade project, as outlined on the project training and support page.

Please help us welcome Michele to EESC and OSU Extension!

Hello Extension friends,

While it might not feel like spring (I wore gloves and a scarf to work this morning. Gloves!), the calendar does tell us that April is here.

Project timeline update

For those of you who have been tracking this project closely, you know that means  our new Extension website did not “launch” in March, which was our original goal.

We are still aiming to launch “phase 1,” a minimum viable website with essential features and priority content, this spring. Based on input we’ve received from program leaders and content teams, and on our project team’s assessment of remaining priority tasks, we will set a new target launch date this week.

In other news:

  • Content strategist: The content strategist recruitment is in the final stages! This person will serve as a key link between the project team and content teams. We’ll announce our new team member with a blog post, when it’s official.
  • What’s happening this week: The work plan for this week continues as outlined in last week’s post. We continue to prioritize support for content team leaders with office hours/open labs, and as-needed meetings. As a result, we are not as far along on our programming and design work. (Again, we are VERY excited for the content strategist to join our team. Can you tell?)
  • Resource update: We’ve made updates to the “managing program content” guide.

This update outlines new resources,  progress updates, and next steps.

Resources

Progress updates:

  • Program leaders provided input on their content teams’ progress and general “readiness for launch.” The project team is also compiling our list of remaining priority content, features, and functions necessary for a minimum viable Phase 1 launch.
  • Based on this information, the project team–in collaboration with Extension leadership–will set a Phase 1 launch date.
  • We have decided to wait to re-engage with county leaders and office managers about county landing pages until the “events” content type is ready, and content teams have had a chance to enter some events.

The plan for the next two weeks

  • Content teams continue content entry
  • Project team continues work on search functionality, event content type, theming/design, homepage content, and consultation with content teams
  • Project team adds centrally-managed content (e.g., news, general “about” info) and select content migrations/imports (per agreements with content teams)
  • User testing (focusing on navigation, homepage, search)

 

This update outlines what’s planned for the next two weeks, as well as new and “coming soon” resources.

Here’s the plan for this week (March 19):

  • Content strategist interviews
    • OSU Extension Collaborative and content team leaders invited to participate in open presentations and Q&A.
    • Recordings will be emailed to this group when available.
    • Feedback is due March 23.
  • Content teams continue content entry
  • Project team continues work on search functionality, event content type, theming/design, homepage content, and consultation with content teams
  • Collect input from program leaders to help set the phase 1 launch date.
    • Program leaders should expect an email from EESC director Jennifer Alexander on Tuesday, March 20.
    • Remember, the phase 1 launch will be a minimum viable product. Not a perfectly polished site with all the bells and whistles.

And the working-draft plan for next week (March 30):

  • Re-engage with county leaders and office managers about county landing pages.
  • Continue content entry, programming, and content team consultation
  • User testing (focusing on navigation, homepage, search)
  • Add centrally-managed content (e.g., news, general “about” info)

Resources

 

Last week marked one small step for our content teams and the project team, and one giant leap for Extension’s new digital strategy.

We opened the back end of our new website for content teams to begin initial content entry. This is HUGE. It means that we are–for the first time–working together as an organization to provide access to the breadth and depth of what OSU Extension offers. And that we are collectively focusing more on our audiences’ needs and preferences than on our own. This is a big, but important, shift. And we are getting there together.

Thank you

Thank you to the content team leaders who took time last week to view the training docs and videos, and to everyone who stopped by during our office hours/open labs, asked a question, or simply logged in to check things out. You know who you are! : )

Tips for content teams

Based on what we’ve seen and questions we fielded over the past few days, here are some tips for content teams.

  • Expect functionality, not fancy. As teams begin to enter content, the project team continues to work on design and layout. If you see something funky, make a note and share it with us. But please don’t let that be a hangup as you keep working on content.
  • What goes where? The quick start guide provides a short overview of available content types (e.g., article, announcement, collection, resource link). Note that the “events” content type is coming soon. The quick start guide provides information on when to use announcements vs. events.
  • More training videos? Yes, more training videos are coming. We started with the basics. Next on the list are videos for program landing pages and collections. We’ll add more videos, and update the quick start guide as more content types and features become available. Thanks and kudos to Victor Villegas for creating the videos, and for assisting with training and content team support.
  • Slow and steady. Everyone is eager to add content and see our new web presence take shape. So far, we’ve seen content team leaders be very successful when they (1) taking time to review the training materials, (2) start slowly–adding a few pieces of content to get the hang of it, and (3) ask questions before getting too far along. This is working well for us, too. Better that we talk through questions and examples early than get a whole lot of content added and then find out something isn’t working as expected.

Please keep asking questions. We’d love to “see” you during office hours/open labs, and we’ll respond to other questions as soon as possible.

 

 

Our new site is open for content teams to begin adding content and working on program landing pages! Woot!

Content team leaders received an email this afternoon with “getting started” information and resources. For reference, we’ve also added a new page on this site with links to training resources, plus the schedule for office hours/open lab help sessions.

Thank you to everyone for your contributions, time, and collaboration that allowed us to reach this milestone.