Over the past couple of years our team has gradually adopted a number of techniques drawn from the Scrum framework. Key amongst these are working in two-week sprints and doing regular reflection on our work through retrospectives. We're keen to be more open about what the team is working on, so we're joining ranks with teams at Edge Hill, Bath and Sunderland (quite possibly more) in regularly publishing a summary.
GraduationOver 3,500 students graduated between 16-18 July in three sunny and cheerful days on campus. Tasha and Suzy helped spread the word and encouraged online participation with lots of coverage on social media. They did lots of photography and video, more than we've ever done before, and we had a 3,000% bump in engagement on Facebook as a result. Dan updated the web pages on which we broadcast live streams of all ceremonies (all credit to the fine folk in the AV department who arrange the actual streaming). Viewers in over 60 countries tuned in to watch.
Search engine changesFor the last 10 years or so we've used Google Mini boxes to provide website search for the University. Google have discontinued the product line, so we need an alternative. Paul has been leading on implementing a backup solution based on Google Custom Search Engine in case our old box goes wrong. Dan has led us through a selection process to choose a longer-term provider of search technology. We'll be able to say more about that in a few weeks once we finalise the contract.
Welcome pages for new studentsPaul's been working with Ali in Internal Comms on putting the final touches to our new welcome pages for new postgraduates. These go alongside well-received pages that we launched a couple of years ago for undergraduates, so we hope these pages help new PGs find their feet too.
Accommodation systemThe University is changing the way students apply for University accommodation and Dan has been working with the project team and supplier to offer a Digital perspective. We've been advising on design and usability and things are looking good.
Adjustment and ClearingTasha is leading work to prepare for Adjustment and Clearing so that we're ready for results day on 14 August. In addition to preparing a list of courses available, we're sprucing up our core pages for prospective students too.
Launching Show and Tell and digital screeningsIn parallel with starting up these sprint notes, we're also starting Show and Tell meetings so people on campus can come and see in person what we've been up to.
We've also scheduled, but not yet announced details of, regular screenings of digital-related conference presentations or virtual seminars to help us and anyone else interested keep up with what's new in the industry. Look out for a blog post soon with more details.