Session Details

Transform the Trivial: Reasons to cut basic tech support from your "to do" list

#MCS12 Marketing, Content, and Social Strategy Track

Room 101C


Addressing the issues of an academic website is not always a matter of man-hours or system enhancements; sometimes all a site needs to thrive is a shift in philosophy. Over the past year, the McCombs web team created a leaner, easier-to-navigate site not by employing new technology, but by removing themselves from outdated roles. The changes in the website’s functionality and usability corresponded with several self-imposed shifts in the web team’s job description:

• Remove web team’s role in basic CMS training
• Place responsibility of creating high-quality content on the users
• Focus web team efforts on technical innovation rather than basic updates and maintenance
• Brand web team as consultants rather than support staff
• Encourage users to teach themselves the basics, and encourage users to help other users

In our presentation, we’ll show how a group of 5 individuals on the first floor (read: basement) of The University of Texas at Austin’s business school--within a single year and without additional funding--was able to:

• Dramatically enhance their site’s user experience
• Increase the web-savvy of students, faculty, and staff
• Eliminate bottlenecks in workflow
• Become a model for other schools within the UT system.

 We’ll also illustrate how others can achieve similar results simply by redefining what a “web team” does and doesn’t do.


Jennifer Chance
Web Team Manager, University of Texas at Austin

Jennifer Chance is the Web team manager for the McCombs School of Business and is a graduate of the Austin Peay State University (’02). Before joining McCombs and becoming a University of Texas staff member, Chance spent nearly a decade in software development and has worked for a number of high-profile employers—most notably, NASA.

Mark Foster
Technology Coordinator, University of Texas at Austin

Mark Foster is the Technology Coordinator for the McCombs Web Team. He is a graduate of the Savannah College of Art and Design and has been working at the University of Texas business school for 5 years. Foster has given presentations before a number of audiences—most recently the Texas State Senate.

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