Change often means changing habits. So it is with how you get your University news and information.
Over the past year, we've been reviewing our overall communication strategy for the campus and in particular, internal communications. The question: How do we communicate effectively with so many people with so many diverse needs and via so many communication tools?
Things used to be simple. We had allemp and allstudent email lists. Those tried and true communication means got the news to everyone. But things have changed. Last year allemp was retired. As the University has grown and our employees have expanded statewide, and as email has become a firehose of information and services (and digital crud) blasting all the news to all employees at will outgrew its effectiveness. Also, emergency notifications were intertwined with pottery sales and surplus equipment. We needed to step up our game.
So allemp went away and PSU-Announce was initiated. Public Relations sent out daily update compilations. For most, this system worked, but something was lost. Internal, combustible conversation. Healthy campus dialogue. The ability of one to send out thoughts to many.
Meanwhile, students are evolving right past us. They use email, but they communicate much more immediately and integrally with cell phones and FaceBook. They are on those communication tools all day long. They might check their email once or twice a day, but it is not their preferred mode.
Concurrent to our growth as a University, communication tools have evolved significantly. We now have a full-fledged campus web portal. We can post news and all sorts of information there. We have blogs, which are simply interactive web pages, technology that is now used to list campus events. We still have email listservs for faculty, OS and PAT groups.
Our problem wasn't that we didn't communicate. Rather, we weren't communicating effectively. We began disseminating news in multiple formats, yet it was flying by many people. Many employees bemoaned the loss of allemp (any employee with the ability send any email to all employees!). Students complained of the University spamming them. We had a bona fide communication gap.
We needed to simplify. We needed to get smarter and more consistent with our communications.
OPR just launched a new myNews tab in myPlymouth. One tab, all news and information for the University. Announcements, Plymouth Week, PSU Athletics, This Week@PSU, the Plymouth Magazine and more.
They also created an 'opt-in' email distribution list called firstname.lastname@example.org (subscribe to PSU FYI at: http://toto.plymouth.edu/mailman/listinfo/fyi) for those that want the daily announcements in their email.
For important and urgent news, all employees and students will still see information pushed to them in email.
Here is where a change of habit might be beneficial. If you want complete news and information of everything going on at PSU, look to the myPlymouth myNews tab. It's all right there. If you want this news delivered to your email, ask for it.
It's no longer the case that the news and information is not there. It's up to you to decide on how you want to get it.