One of the things that prompted me to begin blogging again was an incident that happened at work on the Friday before Thanksgiving. I had a meeting with our college’s web editor to discuss various outstanding issues. To be honest, I couldn’t quite remember what the outstanding issues actually were; we had both been putting off this meeting since August. This time lag, combined with the fact that I was leaving for a two-week vacation to Sydney, Australia the day after Thanksgiving, had me a bit at a lost. I couldn’t really remember what we had planned to discuss.
I probably should have realized that our web editor had things that she wanted to discuss. However, I’m not sure that much could have prepared me for the news that the college was planning to instigate another college-wide web site redesign process. The reason that this was shocking? Well, the college only went live with its latest home page in the spring of 2008. The library went live with its new home page in late August of 2008, and it was only about a year ago that I finished migrating the supporting pages to the new design in our new content management system.
After I almost fainted, the web editor and I were able to have a very productive discussion – the type that I was not able to have with anyone before the last redesign process. This time around, it seems as if the library will be taken into consideration from the start of the process. The short story is that the library was not involved in last redesign process which caused me significant pain and aggravation. But now, the library redesign will be considered a sub-project, and I think that I will be able to be the project manager.
So, we are mostly starting from scratch. The one constant will be our new content management system. In the previous redesign process, we implemented this new system at the same time which added a serious level of complexity to the launch. The good news is that this should give us the opportunity to do a complete overhaul. The bad news? I’m still exhausted from the last go around. I did the best that I could given the resources that I had, the process that I was constrained to and the templates that were provided. But, I wasn’t overly happy with the end result. This made me extremely self-conscious about my role as the library web manager.
Redesigning the library’s entire web presence is the subject that will be taking up most of my mental facilities in the coming months. This is a burden that weighs heavily, and I anticipate that the vast majority of posts in the near future will revolve around this topic. Hope springs eternal, and I keep telling myself that this is an opportunity to create something better.