In 2007 (my fourth year of employment at the MU Office of Research), I began a second overhaul of the Research Division’s Web site. Based not only on my three years of experience designing and managing the site and its content, I explored a relationship with a technical department elsewhere on campus that had developed a fully equipped Web usability testing laboratory, and were looking for pilot sites to run studies on. I quickly volunteered the Research Division site for such testing, and over a period of many months, test subjects were studied using the site running a predetermined battery of activities. The results of the usability study greatly informed the site redesign.
The Research Division site required a great many diverse skills. While I did not write content for the site, I was solely responsible for keeping current with a constant update schedule from the numerous departments and subdepartments who were all hosted on the Division site. A News & Press Releases page required constant upkeep, and an ongoing relationship was forged and maintained with the MU News Bureau. The News and Press Releases page also included links to multimedia content developed for Illumination magazine.
The redesign process also meant meeting regularly with management of each Division department, attending to their particular requests and concerns, and maintaining productive working relationships with staff members all over campus.
As the resident graphic designer in the Office of Research, I was also responsible for various print design tasks as well, such as maintaining the current organizational chart, designing printed news releases for the bulletin board, keeping the Division’s various logos and marks, and maintaining department letterhead.