Nearly nine months ago, a team from the Tulane Office of University Communications and Marketing sat down to contemplate the future — that is, what the future might look like for New Wave, the university’s seven-year-old online news site. The result of the team's planning, an all-new design tailored with readers in mind, debuted in time for the fall semester.
Now that the 2012 New Wave home page
has been unfurled, web communications director Rachel Hoormann talks about the redesign process.
Q: Why a redesign?
It was time to give the site an updated look and feel, but the primary reasons were to make it easier for New Wave staff to post stories throughout the day and to provide space to display the most popular stories for a longer period of time.
Q: What were your other goals?
One important goal was to make the New Wave more timely. In the past there was a new issue every morning. If something happened during the day, you had to wait until the next day to read about it. We still send the morning email but now you can check the site all day long to find the latest news right away.
And we want New Wave to be the definitive source for Tulane news. The redesign allows managing editors to pull in articles from other sources like athletics and the business school onto the New Wave home page.
Q: How did the project come together?
Our team came up with recommendations for functionality and a basic layout, then university designers refined the look and feel. At that point, Paperthin, the company that produces the Tulane website’s content management system, was engaged to build out the functionality.
Q: What’s next?
We all are still experimenting with the site, both in terms of functionality and content. It's a work in progress but I think we now have a structure that can evolve easily over time.
Tomorrow: Learn about 2012 New Wave’s new features.