Over the past half year, we have made several large changes to the BABSEA CLE websites: trioforjustice.org (Trio for Justice) and babseacle.org (BABSEA CLE). Our main aims were simplicity and ease of use.
The most noticeable changes were to the Trio for Justice website. This was almost a complete redo. We switched to WordPress, which made it easier for the team to go in and edit the site without having a large amount of knowledge about website design. By switching to WordPress, the layout was also completely changed to be much cleaner and more beautiful than the original. Before the switch to WordPress, we had to plan out how we wanted to organize the websites. We looked at multiple different event websites, and incorporated their ideas into our own site.
The biggest change to the BABSEA CLE website would be the Externship pages. We have had complaints from staff and interns applying that they could not find the required material and information we demanded of them. To make things easier, we organized the Downloads section into Externship, Materials, Newsletters, and Manuals. On the actual Externship page (now changed to http://babseacle.org/international-externship-clinic-new), we reformatted and reorganized the information, removed the contact form, updated and reworded the text, and removed useless or duplicated links. We have also been rewording much of our text throughout the pages. “Externship Program” is now “Externship Clinic” and we are now working on better congruency between volunteers and interns. Placement options for Indonesia and Malaysia have been removed, as we no longer send interns to those countries. The “Read about Past Interns’ Projects” link was updated to a list of articles by former interns, volunteers, and those observing the interns and volunteers.
We tried experimenting with an online application system, but the idea was unpopular among our interns, who expressed that they like submitting the application through email because they could spend time looking over what they had written. In a compromise, we came up with the idea to submit the application online through a contact form, keep uploads on the server, and sync to the externship manager’s computer. This would allow the externship manager to easily reference applicants, new and old, and check if she accidentally missed an applicant. Her only concern is that the system would be confusing or annoying to applicants, especially with the poorly designed contact form. However, we intend to make this process as simple as possible for those who want to apply.
Overall, despite a few arguments among team members, most of the changes have been positively received. If you notice something about one of our websites that you want changed, you can contact us.