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Digital Transformation Update: CMS migration

Following a highly inclusive decision-making process, MSU Denver will move to WordPress content-management system.

By Kayla Manning

March 18, 2021

Student Agazi Abay studying on tablet.At the center of Metropolitan State University of Denver's newly announced digital-transformation process are accessibility, mobile-readiness, navigability, design and content elements needed to optimize the MSU Denver website into a marketing tool for student recruitment and retention.

Information Technology Services and the Strategy, Marketing and Communications branch vetted a variety of options to deliver easier website content management, a smoother internal user experience and a much-improved external user experience. The team, in conjunction with third-party vendor Clique Studios, gathered user insights from hundreds of people across the University, including students, web authors, Student Affairs, Enrollment Management, the Office of Admissions, University Advancement, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, ITS faculty, the Faculty and Staff Senates, departmental chairs and deans.

Responses gathered from a widely distributed feedback form were then integrated for the next steps of the website redesign.

The result is a selection of a new enterprise content-management system (CMS): WordPress. The new CMS will be used to manage all content on the upcoming new website.

WordPress, widely regarded as an industry standard, will allow content authors to build new pages faster, expand integration and available customization, and provide a more universally supported platform.

Specific advantages of the move to WordPress include:

  • A wider range of page layouts and customizations, allowing greater variety without compromising the user experience.
  • Increased web publishing speed and frequency.
  • Responsive templates for automatic mobile compatibility.
  • Page-accessibility elements incorporated directly into the content-build process, keeping this top-of-mind for all.
  • Since WordPress is widely used and supported, users gain access to a worldwide knowledge base and a wide range of experts.

Current website content will start to migrate to the new CMS beginning in mid-May, after additional templates have been developed. Top-visited pages such as the University homepage and Student Hub are on track to be complete for our official launch in July.  

The SMC team will work directly with web authors to move department, office and service sites beginning in mid-May. During this process, the team will use a Content Concierge Service to provide high-touch, personalized support of the process.

All content authors will receive updated training, reference materials, site audits, analytics and strategic support to ease into the system and officially relaunch their site. Individuals responsible will receive more information in the weeks to come.

Tune in to the President’s Cabinet on Wednesday at 10 a.m. for a presentation about this important project.

Please contact Kayla Manning, director of Digital Marketing and UX Strategy, with questions.

Keep an eye out for more updates on this digital transformation in the Early Bird.

Topics: Excellence, Strategy, Marketing and Communication, Technology

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