Stakeholder: Mike Schoenfeld

Liaisons: Maggie Paine and Joe Antonioli

Stakeholders interviewed: two in-depth discussions were held with representatives from all CA departments. In addition, each department provided written feedback on requirements.

Overview

College Advancement requirements focus on:

  • integration of the many sites it relies on;
  • personalized pages;
  • improvements to online giving and registration;
  • improved data collection;
  • repurposing of content/ability to pull content (video, stories, slideshows, blogs, etc.) into their department web pages,
  • tracking and analysis of online communications;
  • sharing of documents and information within work groups;
  • creation of a microphilanthropy site.

Integration of all CA-related sites

College Advancement needs the various sites that cater to alumni, parents, and friends to be seamlessly integrated and easy to access. Currently, they are not easy to find, it is difficult to move from one to another, and each one has a different look and feel.

These sites are: College Advancement (ie. Give to Middlebury) and Alumni and Parent Programs pages on the cms, Middlebury Initiative, microphilanthropy site (to be developed), online giving form, PantherNet (Harris Connect online community; includes MiddNet career network), Middlebury Online, Agents in Action and Initiative Volunteer Leadership site (volunteer management tools), Google APP events calendar, and University Channel, as well as Facebook pages, LinkedIn site, YouTube, and other social networking tools. In addition, there are affinity group pages developed by alumni, students, or faculty that need to be incorporated into or easily accessible from the CA site. (Examples include the D8 Web site and Digital Bridges site). (Please see appendix for complete list of non-CMS pages that College Advancement relies on.)

PantherNet-the Harris Connect online community-is currently being developed and will launch in May. Alumni and Parent Programs will use PantherNet for many services, and it's critical that these services are integrated with the Middlebury site. The services include:

  • Event registration tied to a searchable calendar of events
  • Broadcast e-mail tool with tracking capabilities
  • Constituent directory with search tool and easy update process
  • Classifieds
  • Career networking tools including interface with LinkedIn and MiddNet, job postings, and online resources

Harris also has the option for alumni to create personalized pages; however, CA is interested in being part of the overall Middlebury customization project. (See below.)

Personalized/Customizable Pages

College Advancement needs to have customizable pages for its alumni, parents, and volunteers. In addition to providing options for alumni to customize their own pages, CA would like to be able to pull specific content into alumni pages, perhaps through a combination of previews of blogs, e-mails, news feeds, videos, etc., and links.

Some of the content could be determined by an individual's Banner record. For example, if an alumnus was celebrating a reunion, information specific to that reunion would automatically be pulled into his page. Similarly, if an alumna were a class agent, Initiative leadership volunteer, or Cane Society representative, specific links and tools would be included on her page. Donors could see their giving history.

Other content that might be pulled into a person's page includes events, important college news, such as a communication from the president, notification that the latest donor honor roll was online, Initiative updates, Annual Fund progress reports (with overall and class participation), and stories relating to a person's interests as shown in Banner (athletics, D8, etc.).

College Advancement would like to see customized pages/portals for volunteers and stewardship reports for individuals accessible after log in.

There is interest in having one log-on that would provide people with access to Middlebury personal pages, donor honor roll, online community, and their pages on multiple social networks. (particularly for younger alumni). At the least, once logged into any Middlebury site, there would be no need for log in to another Middlebury site.

In addition, CA would like to see personalized Web pages for staff members, with features such as calendar, project team discussion groups, and rss feeds.

Online Giving and Registration

Online giving and registration need to be more fully automated and connected to Banner and the Harris online community. Online giving also needs to be easier for donors to use and to provide more giving options.

Currently, TouchNet does not interface with Banner. Instead, each gift and registration requires a journal entry to be done. Then gift processing and alumni staff members enter gifts and registration information manually into each person's Banner record. Recording registration information on the web site is also a manual process.

College Advancement would like to see the following improvements to these systems:

  • Enable Touchnet to interface with the logic that is already written into Banner Self Service.
  • Automatic processing and entry of registrations and gifts into Banner with a screen that allows each gift and registration to be reviewed by a staff member, then accepted. This would also include automatic entry into Banner of updated personal information that is generated when people register for an event or make a gift; again, this data would need to be reviewed before being fed into Banner.
  • Event registration forms that require people to include their e-mail addresses and other personal information.
  • Event registration forms that also allow people to make a gift and have both automatically processed (see above).
  • Registration and gift information automatically displayed on appropriate college pages. For example, when someone registers for reunion, his/her name would automatically appear in the list of who's coming on the class reunion page; as gifts came in, the "mercury" in a thermometer tracking giving would go up.
  • Automatic processing of recurring credit card gifts or pledge payments (currently done manually and credit card information must be kept on file)
  • Once a person logs into the system (either the online giving form, online community, or personal Middlebury page), when he/she goes to make a gift the personal information we have for them in Banner is automatically displayed.
  • Elimination of need for storage of personal security information (credit card data) on College servers.

Online giving could be made easier and more effective in the following ways:

  • Enable memorial gifts and gifts in honor of others
  • Flag missing information in the online giving form as people are filling it out
  • Include a printable form for multi-year pledges as part of giving form
  • Enable automatic withdrawal from donors' bank accounts on a monthly basis
  • Allow donors to request information about gift planning, reunion giving, etc. using the online giving form
  • Provide a feature that recognizes what someone is giving to and suggests other options (like Amazon)
  • Provide option for links to videos that demonstrate impact of giving in particular areas
  • Customized online giving forms for different areas of the College (BLSE, LS, etc.) or specific fundraising projects (Organic Garden, etc.)

Improved Data Collection

Updated information on constituents is key to being able to communicate effectively. College Advancement needs to collect e-mail addresses and other information about alumni and parents. The changes noted above, will help. They are interested in other methods of collecting this data that we might suggest.

Repurposing Content

College Advancement needs to able to pull and display content aggregated in Middlebury Online, "below the fold," or available elsewhere on the Middlebury.edu site (campus blogs, discussion groups, news, stories, lectures, video, slideshows, The Campus, WRMC, etc.) into individual CA pages, where having such content would reinforce key messages and help advancement tell the Middlebury story to its audiences.

Tracking and analysis of online communications

College Advancement needs the ability to track and analyze its online communications. It may be that training in using Google Analytics, Lyris, and the Harris Connect broadcast e-mail tool tracking function will fulfill this need.

Sharing of documents and information within work groups

An easy, searchable system for sharing documents and information-perhaps also including as video, slideshows, photos, etc.-is needed to replace the static N drive, where advancement officers currently store and share information. This must be accessible from off-campus. Having the ability for multiple people to work on a document at once (like Google docs) would also be useful.

Microphilanthropy Web site

College Advancement is charged with developing a site that combines concepts from microfinance and social networking and that enables donors to fund specific projects that are meaningful to them and to connect with others who share their interests.

Other Needs

  • Graduate programs easily accessible via the home page.
  • Discussion groups in each of the languages we teach
  • Interactive thermometer that tracks alumni participation
  • Amazon-type feature that remembers visitors' preferences
  • Obvious way to provide feedback or comment
  • Ease of site navigation
  • Meeting organizer that makes it easy to schedule meetings involving many people
  • Donor site accessible after log-in that includes donor honor roll, 1800 Society and True Blue Society pages, and other stewardship content.
  • Interactive map or other feature that would enable alumni and college communications to post a photo and a brief story or statement. Then each person/location would be added to the map and when you clicked on it, you would see the photo and quote. Map would also have locations of all our schools abroad and Bread Loaf sites with information on each one. An alternative way to show this would be to rotate photos/quotes on the map. MSNBC did something similar, but without the map. Roll over a particular photo of a person and you get a brief quote. Click on the full story and it delivers the story in a pop-up screen. See www.msnbc.com/id/26903309

Posted by Ryan Kellett on January 30, 2009
Tags: Uncategorized

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