The Digital Communications Transformation (DCT) gives you tools and processes for a more strategic approach to planning and managing your Web communications.
Technology and trends can render websites out-of-date or even out-of-touch. Like every organization, universities are communicating with an increasingly wired audience that wants quick and easy access to accurate information. A recent study found that 92 percent of college-bound students said they’d be disappointed with a school—or remove it entirely from their lists—if they didn’t find the information they needed on the school’s website. At UB, close to half of this year’s freshman class made their first contact with us when they applied. This suggests many were checking us out online beforehand. With DCT, we can ensure that prospective students—and others interested in UB—will encounter UB’s distinctive brand whenever they visit our websites.
It means shared templates, standards, documentation, information architecture and staffing models that will help UB grow to a more mature, consistent, well-branded Web environment. It also means a content management system (UBCMS) to help us publish our communications more efficiently and effectively by taking the complex technology out of Web publishing. And it’s a way to overcome technical obstacles or a lack of IT resources, while creating sites that stay fresh and current because they’re so easy to update.
The DCT was preceded by the Web Content Initiative (WCI), a partnership between University Communications, the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences (SMBS) and the Office of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) that produced and implemented recommendations for improving campus Web communications in eight pilot sites. This work has led to recommendations for the university to implement campuswide standards and tools for a branded, on-message and user-friendly Web environment.
WCI was responsible for developing the best practices and processes that now inform how we govern, produce and steward UB’s digital communications. Once the pilot concluded, this continuous initiative was renamed the “Digital Communications Transformation,” or DCT, and the work of WCI has scaled to the campus at large.