It was not all rainbows and puppies. Ideally we want all of our users to think the new website is easy to use and intuitive. Realistically we know we will not please all of our users all of the time. We also know change is never easy. We took away a familiar site with all its warts, early 2000s look, clutter, lack of organization but none of that mattered because our users had grown accustomed to the old website’s quirkiness. Maybe even thought fondly of its quirkiness.
You have moved the ability to search down to the basics – assuming the person knows NOTHING about their subject. I cannot reach my journals without spending ten minutes looking for some way to access them. This new format stinks. (Faculty, 2012)
What have you done? This is simply awful. Yes, visually it LOOKS good, but the functionality is horrible! I just want to search multiple databases for journal article topics. This used to be a very simple process. How in the world do I search multiple databases now? I’m going to Resources – Databases – and then what? There is nothing intuitive about this new site. (Staff, 2012)
We serve a diverse campus and everyone has a different top resource, research skill level, and knowledge of the subject matter. For example, in mechanical engineering there is a faculty member who concentrates on robotics so if they are conducting a literature search they will most likely start with Compendex or IEEE Xplore. Another faculty member also in mechanical engineering focuses on biomechanics. Their literature search starts with Science Citation Index. (And before you think, oh poor delusional librarian, yes, they search Google Scholar too.) Two faculty members in the same college and even in the same department yet their number one literature search tool is different. How do you accommodate researchers in humanities, social sciences, sciences and engineering all with different skill and knowledge levels? Very carefully.
The old site was better with all topics sorted out. I am not being able to find anything..like Infotree, E-journals…everything was clear[er] in the older one. (Student, 2012)
To be honest, I liked the old site a lot better. The new one just seems more cold and lifeless; all the character has been taken out. (Student, 2012)
Where is infotree? The reference page with the OED? Where did everything go? (Student, 2012)
I appreciate your efforts to improve the webpage, and to make library services more helpful for students, but please bring back the previous version. It will make my studies much easier. (Student, 2012)
Sometimes all we could do was attempt to educate the faculty or student submitting feedback and/or thank them for taking the time to send comments. And hope with time they would come to appreciate (or at the very least, grow accustomed to) the look, organization, and function of the new website.
We considered every piece of feedback received as an opportunity to start a conversation. And we had wonderful dialogue with our faculty and students that often ended on a positive note.
Thanks for being invested! I think the ‘research’ tab was an easier way to get to the website that I was looking for. I was looking for that particular proquest and ohiolink website – and I found it, thanks! (Faculty, 2012)
I appreciate your response. I had not noticed “ArticlesPlus, there is a link along the top (third from the left) called Journals A-Z — I think this will help me. (Faculty, 2012)
Thanks for your response. I found the Databases tab shortly after I emailed you. I think it is MUCH easier than the old website to look for it. I appreciate it! (Student, 2012)
Thanks again for your time today and good luck with the site updates. (Staff, 2012)
(Note: This was the last line in an email from the individual who asked “What have you done?” And my favorite email feedback conversation.)
This blog post and last week’s are just a small sampling of the comments we received. I know it was stated in every email reply, but thank you to everyone who sent feedback. We truly appreciated hearing from you. And we are always accepting comments.