Established in 1965, the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs (UCCS) is one of the distinct campuses of the University of Colorado system. The university has a website dedicated to providing all of their students with equal access to information, and plays a vital role in facilitating daily operations across campus. Today, the university has almost 12,000 enrolled students, more than 800 experienced faculty members and more than 800 devoted staff members.
Problem: Website Maintenance Across Many Domains
The UCCS website is primarily managed by the Web Services division of the IT Department. Web Designer, Michael Schaming, from the university’s Web Services team has part of the responsibility for maintaining the university’s more than 200 domains. In support, he is a part of a team that assists in solving any accessibility issues or errors that arise. Michael works on website maintenance most days of the week, and a web governance platform is vital to making his daily workflow more efficient and cost-effective.
UCCS had previously used a web governance solution, but they lacked the option for more advanced reporting. Monsido’s provided a more robust reporting solution that provided the option for reports to be sent to internal stakeholders, as well as detailed reporting on website focus areas, such as accessibility. In addition, they were looking for a consolidated platform to reduce the training needed for staff. In October 2019, they decided to move forward with the Monsido platform.
Solution: More Efficient Website Management
With more than 200 websites to maintain, the Monsido platform provided the UCCS team with a more structured approach to tackling website maintenance and management. Stakeholders across the organization can submit website changes or errors via a ticketing system to the Web Services Team. For more efficiency, UCCS uses the Monsido Policy Module to identify all the places across the website that need the update.
UCCS' proactive approach to content quality assurance, in combination with the Monsido tool, helped them reduce content with issues by 96% in a four month period on their homepage.
In addition to quality assurance, UCCS is working to improve the overall accessibility of their websites. With the large number of websites, it’s an on-going process and the Monsido Accessibility Module has been crucial to help them identify high-priority errors. Notably for their home page, UCCS was able to reduce the total number of accessibility issues by 94%.
“Our students deserve equal access to the content they need, so they can be successful at UCCS. And our job in the Web Services team is to minimize and reduce any barriers,” said Michael.
Monsido’s Accessibility Fast Track® feature has really helped speed up accessibility improvement, as it has allowed them to, for example, identify inaccessible code across the website and swiftly replace it in all instances. Michael noted, “The ability to make accessibility updates in bulk with Fast Track has saved us significant time. Instead of making the update 20 times, you just need to do it once.”.
Benefit: An Inclusive Website Experience For All
The Web Team’s goal is ultimately to provide the best possible website for the UCCS students, staff and community. Monsido has simplified website maintenance for them, and made it possible for them to continuously improve the website experience. The all-in-one platform reduces the amount of tools needed to successfully manage the websites. UCCS has also regularly made use of Monsido’s in-app chat function for quick assistance on more complex tasks.
“Web governance requires time and dedication, but the Monsido platform’s insightful in-tool tips, help center and live chat saves us time and increases productivity” noted Michael.
The robust reporting that Monsido provides has also been beneficial to help secure the continued use of the platform.
“The reporting in Monsido is incredibly valuable. Not only can we document the historic value that the platform provides, but we can show the University Leadership the return-on-investment of having the tool,” stated Michael.
Beyond website maintenance, an added bonus of the Monsido platform has been that it’s a great tool for educating the student development team of integrating web accessibility in their development practices. Monsido’s PageAssist™ personalization toolbar on the UCCS has also been warmly received by the community as a clear signal that the university is invested in providing equal access for all. Going forward, UCCS will continue to focus their efforts on improving the overall quality and accessibility of their many websites.