Role: Content Strategist/Project Manager
Strategy: To build a new website for Emily Griffith Technical College that better highlights the breadth and depth of our Career and Technical Education programs, that is easier to navigate, and that encourages future students to apply.
Design & Scope Planning: In early 2019, we conducted several focus group sessions with students and staff, as well as a few surveys, in order to understand how our students and staff were using our website, to understand what content was most important to our audiences, and to identify structural issues with the website.
We sent out a Request for Proposals mid-fall of 2019. We received 12 proposals, and after a round of interviews, selected a vendor before Christmas with the goal of beginning the redesign process in the beginning of 2020. Projected deadline for the new website implementation was July 2020. The website was launched in full on July 31st, 2020.
Design Process: Once we secured our vendor, I conducted a full content audit of the existing website to understand what content was needed on the site and what information could be removed or restructured. We worked with the vendor to create a site map that allowed visitors better access to the most important and most frequently used content.
Once the sitemap was approved, the vendor created a design based on our strategy and recommendations. Once the design was approved, I worked with a freelance photographer to start gathering new visuals to better represent our programs and the school as a whole, as well as images that would work better with the new website design. We conducted a total of five full day shoots with me leading as art director.
While the vendor began building out the website and working with our IT team to connect the website to our application, student information system, and other software, I worked to completely rewrite all of the copy for the website. We recognized that the copy on our site needed to speak more directly to the main audience of the website–mainly prospective and future students. We also needed to simplify sections, create clearer calls to action, and ensure a consistent tone. During this process, I also helped create a style guide to ensure consistency across all of our materials. Overall, I rewrote a total of 100 webpages.
Once the content was rewritten and the vendor had built out the majority of the website, our marketing and communications team reviewed and tested the site and shared it with key stakeholders to ensure it met our expectations.
Although there were a few fixes necessary, we were able to launch the website on time and within our budget.