We are excited to announce, after a couple of years of working towards improving our resource, The Chesapeake Network we will be launching an updated version on January 31st! Based on user testing, user interviews, and surveys, we came up with the following updates to the Network we felt would help improve the user experience.
1. A NEW LOOK!
Last year the Alliance launched our new website and we are excited for the Network to follow with an updated look that matches the Alliance’s website, including a new logo! The goal of the new design is to not only help the Network to look newer and clearer, but to also help Network users make that connection between the Chesapeake Network and the Alliance.
2. ONBOARDING PROCESS
Through our one on one user interviews, it became clear that users were having issues locating certain sections of the Network. The goal of the onboarding process is to help inform users on how to navigate the site, submit a post, join groups, and subscribe for daily or weekly digests. When a new user registers for the site they will be guided through the steps, much like when you get a new phone. Here is a sneak peek:
3. UPDATED JOB BOARD
The Chesapeake Network has been around since 2008 and in the past 14 years, it has gone through developments. The Network was created after a Chesapeake Watershed Forum as a place for attendees to continue conversations that were started at the forum. Through time this became less relevant and the Network morphed into a space for organizations to share opportunities, such as; announcements, volunteer opportunities, events, and job openings. Based on the user interviews, we learned that the biggest reason individuals register for the Network was to look for job opportunities. Realizing that the job postings was one of the major aspects that brought people to the Network, we’ve updated the job announcements to a job board. Through the job board, you can filter job postings based on position type, location, and field. There is also a map feature so you can view jobs based on area.
4. UPDATED DAILY DIGESTS
Along with the job board, the next most popular feature of the Network was the “Daily Digests” which are the daily newsletters that users can subscribe to get directly to their inbox that shares all the most recent posts to the Network. The digests are now organized by type of post as well as, provide the important details of each post in the title. Here’s a preview:
5. GENERAL REORGANIZATION OF THE CHESAPEAKE NETWORK
Along with some of the bigger updates, we’ve also included some smaller, general updates to help with the functionality of the site. For example, users will be asked to add some additional information to their profiles, this will help with distinguishing who is posting what and who to contact if you have more questions about a specific post.
We’d like to give a big shout-out to our partners at Digital Ink who helped make this all possible.