Vital information for study choice
For years, Maastricht University struggled with on-boarding students through their website. The content management system (CMS) had technical issues and over 400 contributors had piled up 55,000 URLs between them. This required a new vision for both content and content management.
Maastricht University is one of the highest ranking young universities worldwide. It’s unique profile includes:
- a problem oriented education structure,
- a very international character and
- a multi-disciplinary approach of research and education.
Maastricht University actively seeks cooperation with society and business. Its inspiration is responding to urgent and relevant issues in society.
Facilitating a perfect match between students and programme
Matching the right students with the right bachelor programme is a challenge for any university. Maastricht University – with over 50% international students – has the extra challenge that prospective students are often not able to visit an Information Day.
The website had issues. Prospective students would lose their way, and helpdesk telephone lines burned red hot at admissions time. Researchers meanwhile could not really get an overview of what Maastricht University actually does.
Technical errors meant the Drupal CMS needed updating. 55,000 web pages and 400 contributors added extra burdens. Change was urgently needed.
Focus on the end user
Maastricht University wanted a new website based on new content, not just on new IT. This meant a broader vision than an update to the CMS.
The new site focused clearly on the end user: providing the right information in the right form at the right time for prospective students, researchers, employees and other visitors. It focused on the reason for their visit: their Job-to-be-Done. ContentKings introduced a focus on the Jobs to be Done off the different target groups.
From 55,000 to 3,000 webpages. The result of the focused effort of the client team with ContentKings.
Content strategy, content design and production
From the start of the project, ContentKings collaborated with partners Zuiderlicht and Finalist to realize a new website for Maastricht University. During this process we worked on:
- Content strategy for all target audiences and channels of Maastricht University (9 Customer Jobs)
- Follow-up of the content strategy to support the development process of the new site (Customer Job Canvases)
- Content plan for the editorial team (50 Content Formats)
- Support of the editorial team (consultancy, presentations, guidelines, editorial manual)
- Editing (almost 1,000 web pages).
Using a combination of user research tools we created an inventory of user needs. The tools included: online statistics, online questionnaires and task analysis interviews. With these tools we could explicitly find the questions and describe the customer jobs that end users have.
The resulting content strategy matched internal goals with the desires of external stakeholders. During this process we involved as many departments from Maastricht University as possible. The decentralized structure of the existing website made this participation essential for the success of the project.
During our proces of research and analysis we discovered 9 customer jobs for all end-users of the website. What are the questions of users that the website of Maastricht University needs to answer? In close cooperation with the Maastricht University team and based on the content strategy, we designed formats for the website.
Parallel to building the site the editorial team developed rapidly. The editorial team worked in the Tapijnkazerne, a new location of Maastricht University. Twenty editors worked for months to review the CMS, redesign the formats and produce all the content.
Next to these activities we produced 1,000 pages, specifically for ‘Applying for a programme’ and ‘Support’.