Digital Service and Experience Manager
Clare Kennedy, Digital Service and Experience Manager, Information Services Division.
Our team’s main focus is to support colleagues across UCL through our website building service. As well as providing content strategy and user experience advice to UCL web content managers, my role as product owner within the team is to represent our stakeholders and ensure that development of UCL’s main Content Management System (CMS) truly meets the needs of digital communication and marketing staff at UCL.
Before joining UCL I worked in a variety of digital production and communication roles in the private and HE sectors. My experience at University of the Arts London, providing web support and managing corporate website content, has certainly shaped the direction of my career and I’ve gradually moved from communication and content management roles to this more technically-focused role within a large IT department. This has allowed me to learn a whole range of new skills and I find our recently adopted agile approach to digital platform development particularly rewarding.
A slight career diversion in 2015 led me to become UAL’s first Internal Communications Manager and my work on their first staff and student portal has definitely paved the path leading to my latest challenge: the role of Technical Lead in the development of the first UCL-wide staff intranet.
Web content management is rarely a dedicated role, even in large organisations, as it cuts across all aspects of communication and marketing. Internal and external communication, digital marketing, CRM and digital engagement all depend in some way on well-presented and compelling digital content. Because of its importance and because it requires specialist knowledge and expertise,it definitely deserves recognition as a career pathway. A good content manager needs a range of digital skills: web writing, accessibility, SEO and user experience are vital and an appreciation of web design and development are always useful.
My advice for those on the web content management pathway at UCL would be to hone those basic content management skills as they are the bedrock of communication and marketing success and they can pave the way to a range of roles within the communication and marketing area at UCL and beyond. UCL’s content landscape is rich and varied and optimising the way we present our content to the world underpins our strategic aims of showcasing our ground-breaking research and engaging with a global audience.
Finally, do join one of the Communities of Practice. The Digital Community would be ideal for someone in a web content management role. In a large and complex organisation like ours, the Digital Community provides opportunities to shape UCL’s digital presence for the better. As a member, you will benefit from shared expertise, access learning that will improve your own skillset and gain valuable exposure to the many digital roles available at UCL.