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SPDAT Agenda and Bytes

July 16, 2012

The purpose of this page is to hold content for the July SPDAT meeting and Bytes communication.

July Meeting Agenda

We have a full agenda for the July SPDAT meeting!
  1. Intranet project update – Bob Tolsma
  2. UWS Change Management project update – Jeremy Fulbright, Scott Demers, and Bernie Johnsen
  3. Responsive Home Page project update – Jeremy Fulbright and Scott Demers
  4. Evolving SPDAT – Melissa Miller
  5. UWS Resource update – Jeremy Fulbright
  6. New tabs, accordions, and slideshow widget – Jeremy Fulbright

July Bytes Communication

The purpose of this follow-up communication is to provide summaries of the topics presented during the SPDAT meeting on Monday, July 16, 2012.

Intranet update

The intranet project is in a pre-planning stage. We are currently waiting both for funding to be approved, and for the governance group to be established so we can officially get started. The governance group will be will be representative of all units from both campuses, and will drive decisions for the intranet throughout the life of the project.
We spent the last couple months presenting the project proposal to all leadership groups and committees throughout the university, and have been setting high-level plans for how the project will roll out.
Current plans for the first phase of the project include the following:
  • Build an internal website, and move all appropriate department content from the public website to the internal website (intranet).
  • Build collaborative internal websites for 25 cross-departmental projects, activities, and committees.
  • Provide the infrastructure for schools and colleges who are ready to start building intranets.
Initial plans for the next phase of the project include implementing the My Sites feature, and enabling student access to the internal website; however, detailed planning will not begin until the completion of the first phase.
NOTE: We are leaning strongly toward not releasing the intranet until the SharePoint 2013 platform is available to alleviate the necessity of a migration shortly after implementation.

Change Management update

The Change Management project is near completion. Updates on the 5 major components of this project are as follows:
  • The development process is about 50% complete. AISD purchased and configured servers to facilitate virtualized environments for each individual developer in UWS.  These systems ensure each developer can begin packaging, deploying and versioning their work according to MS best practices by connecting directly to AIS&D’s code management system utilizing Visual Studio 2010. This represents a significant step forward in stabilizing our development and deployment processes both in UWS and AIS&D. 
  • Quality Assurance Test Plans are 100% complete. Hundreds of test scripts were developed and ran for supported editing experience, anonymous viewing, and out-of-box SharePoint features and functionality.
  • Theme stabilization is about 70% complete. The Architecture and Planning theme has been updated and implemented. School of Medicine, Business, CLAS and Nursing themes have all been updated, and are working through the implementation process. The remaining themes are currently being updated.
  • Planned support improvements through the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool are 100% complete. We created a weekly ticket report that pulls together numbers for ticket totals, support resource response times, escalated tickets, etc. Although our support improvements specific to the project have been implemented, we will continue to improve our support services using the data collected via this weekly report.
  • Planned support improvements through increased resources are also 100% complete. We hired a Quality Assurance Coordinator, Web and Information Architecture Strategist, and Communications and Training Analyst to ensure our service and support continues to improve. We are also in the final stages of our search for a Project Manager.
To solidify completion of the Change Management process, webmasters for each theme will review and sign the official Service Level Agreement.  This final step will occur during the implementation of theme updates for each school/college.


Responsive Home Page update

We completed a responsive design prototype, using the mobile first approach. By designing mobile first, we focused on only the most important data and actions on the website. Using analytics, we identified that 86% of traffic is internal traffic. We built our responsive design from those analytics, designing the most used features of our website to be the most easily accessible.
When we took the design to leadership, although they approved of the functionality and design, they were not comfortable focusing the home page on internal audiences. From a leadership perspective, it’s not just about the number of clicks – it’s also about ensuring our revenue-driving audiences can easily use our home page.
As such, the original responsive design for the home page is currently on hold. We’re working with leadership to determine how we can design the home page both for our most active users as well as our revenue-driving audiences.
Regardless of the decisions made for the responsive design for the home page, we would like to create a template for schools/colleges to use to enable responsive design on their websites.  Stay tuned for more information about access to these templates.

Evolving SPDAT

As you know, we’ve been working to determine how to best move the SPDAT forward. To gather ideas, UWS has discussed SPDAT evolution as a team, we’ve reached out to webmasters for ideas, and we sent a survey to all members of the SPDAT distribution list (about 50).
After sifting through all our feedback and survey results, we believe we can meet the needs of members by providing the following:
  • Updates on UWS projects
  • Training on advanced (or webmaster-level) SharePoint topics
  • Opportunities to collaborate on hot topics in the web industry, whether or not they are SharePoint related
Here’s how UWS plans to meet these needs:
  • Continue to provide updates on UWS projects either via electronic communication or meeting format
    • ­UWS is hiring a new project manager. Vehicle for project communications will be decided by the new PM.
  • Build and implement training on advanced SharePoint topics
    • UWS already has a decent list of topics, and will solicit additional topics from the current SPDAT list
  • Facilitate the establishment of a CU Denver Web Users Group
    • ­User group will collaborate to talk about all things web. We MUST have interest and commitment from several members to make this group successful! This group will be a joint effort from all interested members, not solely a UWS responsibility.
    • A big thanks to the volunteers at the meeting to get this group established. We’ll get started right away


We’ve hired Susan Teague-Rector in the Web Information Architect and Strategist role. She’ll be working in client management and web strategy, spending a lot of her time on university-level web initiatives. She’ll also be able to help you with web development and redesign projects, providing assistance with strategy, requirements, wireframes, and paper prototypes. Welcome Susan! 
We’re currently in the process of hiring a Project Manager.  The PM will help us more accurately plan, track, and communicate projects.  We’ll also be able to better prioritize our projects, understanding the implications of how reprioritizing our projects will impact other work already in progress.

Tabs, Accordions, Slide Shows Widget

We’re working on a new widget to make it easier to put tabs, accordions, and slide shows in to your sites. This new solution connects the web part to a SharePoint list, which allows you to easily update information.  UWS will create a web part that contains the information typically displayed in accordions (for example), and you’ll be able to fill out and display the information you want using views.  UWS has created wireframes for what the web parts might look like, and AIS&D is working on a proof of concept on the back end.
We are in the very early stages of this project. Next month we hope to have a timeline together.
NOTE: Exiting tabs, accordions, and slide shows will remain in their current state; they will not be updated with this effort. However, once implemented, new tabs, accordions, and slide shows will be created using this new solution. Stay tuned for more information about this effort.​

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