Save the Date: A Pro-Dev Day Just for Hope

Please mark your calendars for a new event coming soon! On Monday, October 10, the Public Affairs and Marketing Division and the Office of Human Resources will be co-hosting a professional development conference for Hope employees. The goal of this daylong event is to empower our colleagues with tools, skills and knowledge that will strengthen our collective efforts and also provide frequently requested information.

Like other professional development conferences, this event will feature a lineup of breakout sessions and general sessions on a selection of topics. (It also will include lunch!) The event will take place at the Haworth Center, making it easily accessible to employees. All are welcome, and participants may attend one, some or all sessions. We will be asking for you to RSVP so that we can plan accordingly.

Here are some of the topics being offered:

  • Planning and Promoting Your Campus Event
  • Tools to Simplify Social Media Management
  • Storytelling: Avenues for Sharing Your Story
  • Using inHope/Calendar
  • Upping Your PowerPoint Game
  • Your Handbook 101: What’s Changing?
  • Retirement on the Horizon? What You Need to Know
  • StrengthsFinder
  • Wellness

 

Why during Fall Break? We planned the conference to occur when offices are a little quieter and staff may have more availability. Understandably, some individuals may be off campus that day. If you’re not able to join us, don’t fret — we are already thinking ahead to the next one!

In the spirit of community, we hope that this event will live into Strategic Plan Goal 4, Objective 3: Assess, address and promote a campus culture where each person can flourish. Supervisors, please encourage your staff to participate.

Watch for registration details coming soon. We look forward to a great conference with you!

Letting go is never easy

One of our goals in transitioning to our new website is to make Hope’s website smaller. There was too much information on our old site, and that just makes it harder for our users to find what they’re looking for. It’s time to slim down.

But that isn’t always easy to do. We’ve gotten used to doing something just because that’s the way we’ve always done it. We’re attached to it. We disagree about what’s actually important to our audiences.

Here are a few questions to help assess your content:

1. Does my audience actually need this information?

Sometimes we put content on our website because it’s important to us, not because it’s important to our user. If it doesn’t answer a question your audience is actually asking or provide information that’s truly valuable to them, then it shouldn’t go on the website. And remember: You are not your target audience.

2. Does this information already exist elsewhere?

We shouldn’t duplicate content. If a user can access the information somewhere else — the registrar’s or provost’s offices, for example, or the online catalog or event calendar — then we should simply provide easy access to that content. Link to it in a way that makes sense to your user.

3. Does this information really belong somewhere else?

Maybe the content is important to your audience, but it really belongs somewhere else. Sure, that syllabus is critical for the 18 people enrolled in your course this semester — but our public-facing website probably isn’t the best place to put it. (That’s what Moodle is for.) Figure out where it belongs, and let’s make sure it goes there.

Announcing: inHope, the new KnowHope

The new college intranet, which is replacing KnowHope, is now live and available! The new service is called inHope, and can be accessed at in.hope.edu. It is only accessible to individuals who have a hope.edu email account. Features of inHope include: mobile friendly, easy to scan/filter, common links, easy to submit announcements, today’s events calendar, featured news, academic calendar, people search, blog posts, Instagram photos, a survey of the week and more!

Learn more about inHope

  • Mobile friendly: (responsive to every device size)
  • Links: quick access to all of the common links, resources and services you use on a regular basis can be found in the orange navigation bar at the top. Hover over “Resources” to see links for Resources (commonly accessed items), Services (forms and requests), and Safety (emergency guide, incident reports, etc).
  • Content Filters: colored filters can be turned on and off, applying to everything on the page
  • Announcements: tagged announcements can be viewed by clicking the announcement title. A new streamlined submission form makes it easier to submit announcements, which allows you to determine how long you want your announcement to stay on the site. Announcements should include information that pertains to the majority of campus and is not an event (unless you’re previewing your event in advance) and not something already covered in an official press release.
  • Featured Story: most days a new item will appear highlighting a big story for the day (news story, blog post, big event, campus photo, etc).
  • Today’s Events: will always show all events happening today. This is showing a direct feed from our campus web calendar. View instructions for submitting an event to the events calendar.
  • Take Note: these boxes will feature various content that is important to take note and may have a longer shelf life than an announcement.
  • Academic Calendar: this will pull a direct feed of the Academic Calendar via a Google Calendar maintained by the Registrar’s Office. You can also subscribe to it and add it to your own Google Calendar.
  • People Search: Employee Search and Student Search both pull the same information as KnowHope People Search did, but now is a filter instead of a search, which returns even quicker results. Employees can be searched by name or by department as well as sorted.
  • Other Services: you’ll also find updated versions of Marketplace, Ride Exchange, Incident Reports and (coming soon) Minutes and Agendas.
  • More: also explore blog posts, Instagram photos, and a fun survey of the week sponsored by the Frost Center!

 

Questions or suggestions? Contact us at inhope@hope.edu.

Introducing Websmith

A while back we launched Websmith, a new users’ group for people who actively manage web content in OU Campus. For those of you who couldn’t make our first meeting, here’s a quick introduction to what we’re trying to accomplish.

Please join us at an upcoming meeting! You can sign up online to express interest.

OBJECTIVE

To connect campus users who develop, edit and maintain content in OU Campus and equip them to effectively represent Hope College online.

GOALS

  • Connect with OU Campus users in other departments and offices
  • Participate in focused learning about OU Campus and/or web content
  • Celebrate success of group members and other departments, offices and programs (e.g., showcase new websites, highlight new concepts or ideas)
  • Identify and share best practices, tips and tricks
  • Express pain points and identify solutions to common problems

ELEMENTS

1. Monthly meetings

Here’s a sample agenda:

1 p.m. — Mingle
1:10 — Announcements; celebrate success
1:15 — Featured topic
1:35 — Featured topic Q&A
1:45 — General Q&A
1:55 — Dismiss

Upcoming meetings are scheduled for the first Tuesday of the month (generally) at 2 p.m. in the DeWitt Herrick Room. Here are the dates:

  • September 6
  • October 4
  • November 1
  • December 6
  • January 3
  • January 31
  • March 7
  • April 4
  • May 2

2. Online community

For now, look for additional information right here on the Public Affairs and Marketing blog. You can find it with the new Websmith category. If you’re looking for an easy way to get updated with every new Websmith posts, please subscribe.

Eventually, we’ll put some work into developing a robust online community, including easy access to digital resources, training videos and other material.

3. Additional training

We’ll spend some time at each meeting with in-depth training. In our last meeting, we covered those pesky images — how to upload them and size them for your page and how to create and use new photo gallery assets.

Potential topics for future meetings include:

  • Using assets and snippets
  • Editing images outside of OU Campus
  • Creating video for the web
  • Grammar and style
  • Making workflow work for you

Of course, we welcome your suggestions!

The New KnowHope

Many of us have relied on KnowHope for our daily information during much of the site’s existence, which premiered in 1996. We’re excited to announce that we’ve been working on a “new KnowHope” to serve as the next generation of our college intranet. It will feature a new name and design, offer new functionality, and introduce a streamlined process for submitting information.

We’re planning to launch this refreshed service to coincide with the new academic year, but we would like to give you a sneak peek of the new site before it goes live.

You’re invited to a “new KnowHope” presentation this Thursday August 18 at 10am in the DeWitt Center Herrick Room. Refreshments will be provided.

We look forward to launching this improved site for our faculty, staff and students and hearing your feedback!

Bultman Student Center

One of the great things about working for Public Affairs and Marketing is that no day is quite like the next. While I do spent a good amount of time at my desk, my bosses have also instructed me to do things like go to the beach, assist web training classes, and participate in campus wide films. It’s these kind of spur of the moment tasks that make me love this job even more.

So today when I was asked to take some pictures of the Multicultural office, Student Life, and Dean Frost signing a beam in the new Bultman Student Center, I jumped at the opportunity. I met the group at the construction trailer and was immediately given a hardhat and safety goggles. I started to wonder if maybe I shouldn’t have been so quick to jump at the opportunity, seeing as I was the only one not wearing closed toed shoes, but once I entered the student center any thoughts about my footwear were quickly tossed aside.

The space was absolutely incredible. Boasting tall arches, a 200 seat theatre, and tons of space to be used for just hanging with friends, it was truly heartbreaking to walk through and know that I’d never get to use this space as a student myself.

But even though I personally won’t be able to use the space, getting a sneak peak tour today made me so excited for all the future students who will be able to use it. The space has so much potential for so many different uses.

For instance, it has tons of space that will hold high tops and couches that I think will be so fun for students to use as a more low key and social study environment, rather than, say, the library or Martha Miller. As someone who frequently gets dirty looks on the first floor of the library for laughing or talking far too loudly, I know I would definitely put this space to use.

We were also shown the space that will be used as a prayer chapel, something I didn’t even know was going to be included in the student center, so it was really cool to both see the space and also hear the plans they had for it once the building was finished. Even from just looking at the bare bones of the room, I can tell it’s going to be a beautiful space for students to de-stress and relax.

Throughout the whole tour, I just kept thinking to myself how lucky I am that I go to a smaller school like Hope, that offers intimate class settings and personal relationships with both students and professors, but is also able to build beautiful buildings, like the Bultman Center, that spare no expense to give us students a space that really makes Hope feel like home.

I hope you guys enjoy the sneak preview pictures and are able to envision all the opportunities the Student Center will offer next Fall.IMG_0063
IMG_0076 IMG_0095 IMG_0064 IMG_0088

 

New Library Website

Congratulations to the Van Wylen Library on the launch of their new beautiful website, hope.edu/library.

If you’re interested in learning more, our friend Jon Bandstra at the Library has published a great blog post about the new site and its updates. Check it out!