Welcome to the New Intranet, Campus Calendar, and Daily Digest

Last week on June 1 we launched the new Intranet. The Intranet is a portal-like website that contains information meant for the Hampshire community, which is why it requires a Hampshire username and password to access most Intranet content. The homepage contains a collection of links relevant to the person logged in, and it’s the place to post announcements and events that appear in the Daily Digest and on the campus calendar. If you’re a Hampshire student, faculty or staff member, hopefully you have at least noticed the redesigned version of the Daily Digest in your email inbox this week.

Our main goal with the new Intranet was to provide similar, but better, communication tools in a user-friendly way. We did a lot of user testing and interviews with students, faculty, and staff, which made the direction of our work very clear. Hopefully the new Intranet addresses most of the downfalls of the old Intranet. If you feel like it doesn’t or you have suggestions, we would appreciate it if you would send us your feedback.

New Features and Changes

Redesigned Intranet Homepage

  • The links you see on the Intranet homepage are relevant to your affiliation with the College. If you’re a student you’re going to see slightly different links than faculty or staff because certain items are more relevant to you, such as student employment, for example.
  • A lot of the links on the homepage point to pages on the external Hampshire website. We cross-linked a lot of items with the hope that it makes it easier to find what you’re looking for as a Hampshire community member, no matter which website it lives on.

Redesigned Daily Digest Email and New Submission Features

  • Teaser text for each post was removed from digest emails and only titles are displayed, so the Daily Digest should be quicker to skim through each day.
  • “Today’s Events” were moved to the top, and upcoming events now appear mixed in with announcements in their respective categories, preceded by their start date.
  • The categories were slightly changed and reordered a bit.
  • Daily Digest emails now go out every day (as long as there are posts for that day) instead of just Monday through Friday.
  • Links to the Intranet, the calendar, and to submit your own announcement or event are now easily accessed straight from the digest emails.
  • When submitting an announcement or event you can now specify which date(s), up to three, you want your post to be included in digest emails. You can also edit old announcements and events and change the digest date(s) to have it sent out in future digest emails.
  • You also have the ability to upload a related document or image to an announcement or event, which can be viewed in the post’s details on the Intranet.
  • You can preview your posts by saving them as “Unpublished” before saving them as “Published” (or “Needs Review” for students).
  • It’s responsive! Whether you’re reading a digest email, browsing the calendar, viewing an Intranet page, or posting your own announcement, the site should look good and function properly no matter what screen size or device you’re using.

Read instructions for posting announcements and events

Announcements, Important Announcements, and Featured Announcements

  • The ten most recently posted announcements appear at the top of the Intranet homepage. More announcements can be viewed by clicking on the ellipses icon.
  • Important Announcements function pretty much the same as always. They are sent out in an email as soon as they are posted. They are also displayed at the top of the Intranet homepage.
  • If you had access to submit Important Announcements in the old system then your access should have been carried over to the new system; if for some reason it hasn’t, please let us know.
  • Featured Announcements are new and available for use by the President’s Office and the Communications Office to share highlights and community messaging. These posts contain a thumbnail image and they appear at the top of the Daily Digest and Intranet homepage.

Read instructions for posting Important Announcements

Read instructions for posting Featured Announcements

Campus Calendar

  • The Academic Calendar is now integrated with the campus calendar. Academic Calendar events display with a purple background and they can be filtered by specific categories.
  • There is now an event sponsor field where you can choose one or more offices, departments, or programs as sponsors of the event. Each event sponsor in the list can view a calendar of their own by going to their respective URL: https://intranet.hampshire.edu/calendar/sponsor-name (for example, the SAC calendar is https://intranet.hampshire.edu/calendar/sac)

Take a tour of the new calendar

Student Job Listings

  • Better organized
  • Easily filtered and searchable

Browse student jobs

Intranet Pages

  • If you had access to edit Intranet pages in the old system then your access should have been carried over to the new system. If you don’t have access, let us know by submitting a bug report.

Read instructions for editing Intranet pages

The Search Works!

  • Not only can you easily search the Intranet website from the top of any page, but there’s an advanced search that allows you to choose which types of content you want to search.

Notice a Bug or Want to Send Feedback?

There’s a cute little bug icon Bug iconat the bottom right corner of the screen when you go the Intranet and log in. Click on the bug to bring up a bug report screen. When you submit information here it goes directly to the Applications and Web Services Team in IT.

Planning for the Future

Throughout this process people have already told us about new features they’d like added to the system. We hope to have further conversations about adding features such as:

  • A planning calendar
  • Role switching (so that faculty and staff can view what students see on the homepage)
  • An option to send events to the communications office for public promotion
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Do you love to code? Hampshire is looking for a part time web developer

The Hampshire College IT department is looking for an awesome web programmer to join our fun, flexible office. You can read the job requirements (and APPLY!), but we wanted to use some of this space to share what working in IT @ Hampshire is like, and why we love our jobs.

Who Are We?

Applications and Web Services is one group within the centralized IT department at Hampshire. We have many responsibilities within our group of 8 people, which could be summarized as:

  • College websites (dozens and dozens of them)
  • Enterprise applications (for admissions, course registration, human resources, and more)
  • OneCard (access to buildings, meal plans, bookstore, etc)
  • Reporting services (both ad-hoc as well as longitudinal analytics)

We do many other things, but that highlights most of it. This position we’re seeking to fill is a web developer to help out with the many different College websites.

What Is Working at Hampshire Like?

First of all, we’re people. We have likes and dislikes. We work hard. We have fun. And we like to eat and talk about food. A lot.  Some of us love to cook, bike, hike, walk, ski, paddle, play games, watch movies, play music, read; the list goes on and on. We have varied interests and skills both in and out of the office. I suppose one way to convey some of the awesomeness of our office is “show, don’t tell”.

Join Us!

Don’t be misled by the awesomeness above; we work hard, but we play hard, and we respect the creative efforts of everyone to make our office both productive and fun.

Apply Now

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The Hampshire Intranet, Daily Digest, and Campus Calendar Overhaul Project

Many students, faculty, and staff are already aware that some of us in IT and the communications office have been working on a major redesign of the Hampshire Intranet, which includes the announcement and event system that runs the campus calendar and daily digest emails you receive each morning during the week. We want to provide the campus community with some details about the project along the way, so here goes…

What is the Intranet?

The Intranet is a portal-like website that contains some password-protected content meant for the Hampshire community. The main page has a bunch of links, and it’s the place to post announcements and events that appear in the daily digest emails and on the campus calendar.

Why are we overhauling it?

The Intranet has existed in a similar state for well over 10 years. As a community we still have a need for communication tools like announcements, a central campus calendar, and a place to put information that requires a Hampshire login. We’ve received a LOT of feedback over the years about different aspects of this system. We’ve done user testing and interviews with some students, faculty, and staff, which made the direction of our work very clear. The same feature requests and bugs came up over and over again. We want to provide similar and better functionality in a user-friendly way.

What kinds of changes are we talking about?

There will be a lot of changes, but here are highlights of the big ticket items we’re addressing:

  • Redesigned daily digest email, including new features when submitting announcements and events.
  • Redesigned Intranet homepage with helpful links targeted specifically for students, faculty, and staff respectively based on who is logged in.
  • Centralized campus calendar and academic calendar.
  • Student job postings (both work study and non-work study) that can be easily searched and filtered.
  • Search functionality that indexes all Intranet content, including announcements and events.

Timeline

We plan to launch the new Intranet/Digest/Calendar in January 2017.

We’ll be posting more details about the project as we progress and we’ll be looking for feedback. In the meantime, questions, comments, or concerns can be sent to webmaster@hampshire.edu.

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Forms and Surveys at Hampshire

The Hampshire Form Generator

For over ten years, Hampshire IT has supported a custom tool, built by students, for generating online forms. Many staff, faculty, and students have used the Hampshire form generator to create online forms and surveys for different purposes. While this system has worked OK for the needs of some, it is lacking in features and has some bugs of its own. Rather than focusing our time and attention on maintaining the Hampshire form generator (and, frankly, rebuilding the wheel) we are embracing other tools that already exist with similar and better features. Enter Qualtrics…

Qualtrics

Qualtrics Research Suite is a powerful tool for building complex surveys and doing data analysis. Hampshire has a license to use this software, which has been a key part of collecting data for the Office of Institutional Research for the last few years. Much like the Hampshire form generator, anyone with a Hampshire username and password can create forms and surveys using this software. Learn more about the latest version and features of Qualtrics.

We will be hosting workshops this Spring for folks who are interested in learning more about Qualtrics. In the meantime please contact Asha Kinney with any questions or to request training.

The Future of the Hampshire Form Generator

Hampshire IT has made the decision to slowly retire its custom form generator. The slow retirement will look something like this:

  1. The ability to create new forms will no longer be available as of March 1, 2016. People will still be able to submit responses to existing forms, and owners of those forms will still be able to access and export responses, but nobody will be able to create brand new forms.
  2. The ability to submit responses to forms will no longer be available as of August 1, 2016.
  3. The ability to access and export responses to forms will no longer be available as of September 1, 2016.

What Does this Mean for Form Owners?

  1. If you have any forms in the form generator that need to be active after August 1, 2016, the forms will need to be recreated elsewhere. Unfortunately there is no way to export forms out of the form generator. We recommend creating forms in Qualtrics, but if you find that Qualtrics is too much for your needs and you want a more simple form building tool, please get in touch with IT and we can discuss other options for creating basic online forms.
  2. If you want to save responses to any of your forms you must export that data before September 1, 2016. Here is a quick video that shows how to download form response data.

Questions?

Contact the Applications and Web Services team.

Are You a Programmer? Come Work @Hamp!

The Hampshire College IT department is looking for an awesome programmer to join our fun, flexible office. You can read the job requirements (and APPLY!), but we wanted to use some of this space to share what working in IT @ Hampshire is like, and why we love our jobs.

Who Are We?

Applications and Web Services is one group within the centralized IT department at Hampshire. We have many responsibilities within our group of 7 people, which could be summarized as:

  • College websites (dozens and dozens of them)
  • Enterprise applications (for admissions, course registration, human resources and more)
  • OneCard (access to buildings, meal plans, bookstore, etc)
  • Reporting services (both ad-hoc as well as longitudinal analytics)

We do many other things, but that covers most of it. This position we’re seeking to fill is a developer within Enterprise Applications.

What Is Working @Hamp Like?

First of all, we’re people. We have likes and dislikes. We work hard. We have fun. And we like to eat and talk about food. A lot.  Some of us love to cook, bike, hike, walk, ski, paddle, play games, watch movies, play music, read; the list goes on and on. We have varied interests and skills both in and out of the office. I suppose one way to convey some of the awesomeness of our office is “show, don’t tell”.

Join Us!

Don’t be misled by the awesomeness above – we work hard. But we play hard and respect the creative efforts of everyone to make our office both productive and fun.

Apply Now

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Tech Tip Extra: Unplug for the Holidays

It’s always a good idea to unplug electronics before heading off on an extended break. This will save electricity and protect devices from power surges should the power go off and back on again during the break.

We have seen printers as well as computers and monitors fail from power surges. If you’re the last one to leave the office before break, take a look around and see what is left on or plugged in; write a note to remind yourself or a colleague to plug them back in in 2016.

Have a wonderful break!

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