Goals for CSUMB.EDU Rethink

A team of web professionals from Austin, Texas, visited campus this week, meeting with Web Services and University Communications in the initial "discovery" phase of the CSUMB.EDU Rethink project that will continue through June 30.

Four Kitchens is a web development firm who won a competitive bid to assist the university with an overhaul of our public and internal web presence.


We initially participated in a goals workshop that included throwing up ideas on post-it notes that were related to the university, our two departments and any personal goals we all have.

For the university, we broke down into these collections of ideas of improvement:
  • Conversions
  • Mobile
  • Reputation
  • Grow
  • Target Different Groups
  • Process Improvement

For departments, our collection of goals to improve upon were: 
  • Simplify
  • Relationship
  • Editing
  • Share
  • Design
  • Communicate/promote
We then reduced our post-it notes in collections down to these five statements as project goals to work towards:
  • "Create a delightful, elegant and consistent experience across all devices."
  • "Create more meaningful interactions through better tools for all users."
  • "Create and promote relevant content to tell the university's story and provide a better level of service."
  • "Consolidate separate web presences to ease operations and facilitate content reuse."
  • "Continue to exemplify transparency by sharing our challenges, breakthroughs and achievements with the broader CSUMB and world communities."


We also did a workshop to undercover the issues we will address in the coming months, before they actually happen. 

On the whiteboard, they wrote "Here lies CSUMB Rethink" and we began to put post-its up of failures. We ended up with these collections of notes:
  • change management
  • stakeholders
  • technical implementation
  • editing environment
  • migration of content
  • general feeling
  • workload issues (campus growth vs content)
  • resources
  • responsive (i.e. mobile)
This lead to a discussion of how we can avoid these pitfalls and what resources/people do we have on the team that can help reduce many of these points of failure.

User Feedback

We spend our lunches meeting with and gathering feedback from students, staff & faculty in the Dining Commons.

We also met with stakeholders from Student Affairs and Extended Education and will continue to use these kinds of groups to provide feedback along the way.


We ended with a SMART goals workshop that helped us focus on the specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timed goals for our project.

This was our toughest workshop, because it meant we really had to focus on things that weren't necessarily action items but things we'd like to have happen at certain times.

Many of these we couldn't finish in time and we'll work on in the next week, but they included testing, surveying, communicating (e.g. Twitter/blog), and completing key interfaces (e.g. prior to registration).