First pages of the new Bath website are live

Posted in: Beta, Content design, Content Publisher

Today we published a number of sections on the new Bath website. These pages appear in our new designs, managed by our new CMS and they have been produced using our new approach to content design.

The sections are:

Congratulations and thank you to the department involved and the Lead Publisher Steve Milnes. It’s been hard work but the benefits to the end users are clear to see.

What’s new

When you look at these new pages the most obvious changes are to the way they look. Each type of content - be it a project or announcement, for example - has a templated design so that all pages of that type look alike and adapt to whatever screen size you are using. The words you read are displayed in a new typeface that makes everything easier to read.

There are far fewer pages in this new site and every item of content has been analysed to make sure it is useful. Every item of content belongs to an organisation within the University and to one of 12 content types, with the aim of getting people to what they need more quickly. In the near future we intend to add topics as a third way of identifying and browsing our content, so that you don't need to know who in the university is responsible for that content.

The publisher of the content item you are looking at has followed a template when producing the page. Providing this structure makes the creation and editing of content quicker, reduces page errors and allows us to monitor and improve the quality of content. For example, every page is required to have a title and summary that is short, uses plain English and makes it clearer what the point of the page is.

All the people who can publish on the new site have been through training. The software has been designed so that next-to-no technical knowledge is required. Instead our training programme has focused on new skills that directly benefit the site's users, such as understanding user needs, content design and analysing content performance. This also means that we can let more staff publish content online and at the same time keep the quality high.

Suggest an improvement

We hope that the users of the site will let us know how well it is meeting their needs. We expect users to discover bugs, snags and additional content or features that need to be added or improved. If you find a problem or have a suggestion, we’ve provided a link to 'suggest an improvement’ at the foot of every page so you can tell us about an issue if you encounter it.

If the feedback relates to the content of the page, we will route this through to the publisher responsible to deal with. If it’s about the design or functionality then it will be for us in the Digital team to think about how we deal with it and resolve or explain why it isn’t possible or desirable. Either way your feedback will be acknowledged, responded to and it will always be welcomed.

Stay in touch

We will be posting further updates as we add content and features to the new site over the coming weeks, so check back regularly or sign-up to receive email alerts when we post.

Posted in: Beta, Content design, Content Publisher

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