Public Affairs | Illinois

Public Affairs | Illinois University of Illinois homepage home page

Developing Web Sites

Navigation

image of students interacting in class

Departments

Resources

Web Project Management Guide

Setting goals
Time estimates and team members
Content review and navigation
Site structure and navigation
Finalizing timeline and content
Visual design development
Production and proofing
Launch and maintenance

Finalizing Timeline and Content

Late content is a chronic problem. All the project-management books tell you to plan for it. There are, however, steps you can take to avoid or at least mitigate this problem:

Hire or designate an editor.

Some people can't write well and some can't write quickly. The non-writers on project teams generally take two to three times as long to draft copy as someone who writes for a living. Tell your content providers they're not responsible for perfect writing, just for coming up with a rough draft of the content. Be sure to build in time for the editorial process.

Stress that on-time is better than perfect.

This above approach is not effective when dealing with perfectionists. Still, you'll want to try to assure these folks that they can improve their work after the site is up.

Subdeadlines are critical

Have clear, reasonable, weekly or bi-weekly subdeadlines and check in on a regular basis.

Sample subdeadlines

Week 1
Pages 1-50 due to editor
Week 2 Pages 50-100 due to editor
  Pages 1-50 due from editor to production (HTM
Week 3 Pages 100-150 due to editor
  Pages 1-50 due from production to proofing
  and so on


If your department has print publications and your URLs change, alert them as soon as possible to your new URLs.

Next: Visual design development