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Web Content Design Assistants – helping us iterate our migration approach

In September 2023, two Web Content Design Assistants joined the UX team to support the project to migrate web content to EdWeb2. Since they joined they’ve helped the successful migration of over 30 sites, and helped us streamline our approach. We’re delighted to be recruiting more people into this role, bringing the total to five.

Where it began – our first Web Content Design Assistants

Anita Joseph and Nick Bush were appointed as Web Content Design Assistants in 2023. There were introduced to the migration project with an induction to EdWeb, an induction to EdWeb2 and an in-depth familiarisation with many different EdWeb sites. They also completed user-centred design training and learned about the distributed web content publishing model we operate at the University. When they joined, migrations were underway – with a script being used to transfer content from old EdWeb sites to new EdWeb 2 ones. In their new roles, Anita and Nick got stuck in checking site content had migrated correctly, flagging instances where it hadn’t, and implementing manual content fixes where necessary.

Co-creating a migration auditing and tracking tool

A key part of the end-to-end migration process is checking the migrated site content against the current site content – in a process referred to as auditing. This task requires meticulous attention to detail and can be time consuming, especially if the site contains a lot of complicated content. Nick spotted an opportunity to streamline the auditing process and built an experimental tool. He wanted the tool to be useful and usable, so once he had built an early iteration he called on Anita’s experience to test the tool in context. Anita’s feedback prompted changes, and through successive testing and tweaking, the tool went through several iterations, morphing from an auditing tool to a tool with tracking functionality built in, displaying a dashboard view for each site.

Triaging the knowledge gained from auditing

As more and more audits were completed, patterns in the way content was migrating were recognised, and it was important to feed this information into the ongoing improvement of the migration script. The Web Content Design Assistants played a pivotal role in this process, not only spotting recurring instances but also recognising the context in which these occurred, and categorising them for the attention of the team supporting the development of the migration script and the operation of the automated part of the migration process.

Supporting web publishers through training

With her experience analysing and auditing large volumes of site content, implementing manual fixes and learning about the differences between web content in EdWeb and EdWeb2, Anita was in an excellent position to help the UX team design training sessions for web publishers. These practical sessions build on topics covered in the Effective Digital Content online course, with the aim of complementing the EdWeb2 training offered to web publishers ahead of their scheduled dates for migration.

More Web Content Design Assistants to join the UX team

I am delighted to have begun recruitment for more Web Content Design Assistants to join us, bringing the total to five. Over the coming weeks and months, in preparation for their arrival, we will be consolidating our learnings from the past 6 months to ensure our new recruits easily slot into our migration operations process. Key to this, will be a focus on ways they can support our web publishing community to ensure their newly migrated sites offer the best possible content design experience to University audiences.

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