Chesapeake College Issues Website RFP

Chesapeake College

Chesapeake College (Chesapeake), Maryland’s first regional community college, is a fully accredited, public, two-year institution serving the community for more than 50 years. Its open-admissions policy supports its mission to provide affordable, accessible education leading to transfer to four-year schools, immediate entry into the workforce, contract training to businesses and industry, as well as continuing professional studies and certifications, skill-building and personal enrichment courses not leading to degrees or certificates. Chesapeake’s audiences are vast and diverse and its website needs to meet the needs of all these audiences as well as current students, faculty, staff and parents. Chesapeake College seeks to improve the user experience of its website through a complete website development process that includes design, rearchitecture, new content management system (CMS), as well as new management operational framework and site governance policies and processes. Rather than migrating or reworking the college’s existing content, we plan to build a new site from the ground up that takes into account best practices in website content, navigation, design and accessibility. The college anticipates the new website launching within 12 months after initial kick-off meeting. The ideal vendor will work with the college to clarify and confirm goals and objectives of the website and garner support for an implementation plan.

The vendor will work closely throughout the process with the college’s website design and development team, comprised of members of Information Technology (IT) and College Relations (CR). The vendor will be expected to research, identify recommend and implement new content management software. The vendor will help us clarify the following strategies, then build a site that supports them. The website should:

· Attract prospective students and engage them in the decision-making process

· Provide efficient access to website resources for current students, faculty, staff, and other key audiences and customers such as parents, alumni, businesses and donors;

· Support and help elevate Chesapeake’s image, reputation and credibility

· Communicate the breadth and depth of the College’s programs

· Improve the ability to measure marketing results through improved metrics and analytics


Chesapeake College’s core commitment is to prepare students from diverse communities to excel in further education and employment in a global society. We put students first, offering transformative educational experiences. Our programs and services are comprehensive, responsive and affordable. The college is a catalyst for regional economic development and sustainability and a center for personal enrichment and the arts. The college offers a large selection of credit and continuing education offerings designed to help students prepare for transfer to upper level institutions, for immediate entry into a career, or for enhancing work-related skills. Beyond the curricula, the college offers many opportunities for further academic, social, personal, cultural, and athletic development through a rich variety of extracurricular and co-curricular activities. To enhance student learning and to promote teaching excellence, the college commits to providing a supportive learning environment characterized by a dedicated, caring and highly qualified faculty and staff. The college offers all employees professional development opportunities that are aligned with goals outlined in its Strategic Plan. Through these commitments, the college nurtures a community of lifelong learners among faculty, staff and students.

Scope of Work:

The statement of work documents requirements and expectations from the vendor toward the successful implementation of Chesapeake’s website design and development initiative. The requirements include the need for project discovery and planning, design and development, implementation and transition, as well as a plan for ongoing management.

  1. External and Internal Assessment The vendor will:

· Utilize and share comparable research previously performed by the vendor

· Review other best practice research publicly available

· Review current internal research provided by Chesapeake

· Meet with key stakeholders to better understand website needs, gain feedback on content contributor structure and internal capabilities to manage content, insights on key audiences, and garner support of the project (The vendor’s recommendations of the type and number of meetings should be outlined in the proposal.)

· Work with the website design and development team to confirm primary business objectives for the main landing pages

Upon conclusion of these activities, the vendor will provide a summary of findings, a proposed vision and strategy for the new website, and a concise persona summary matrix that captures the needs of multiple key audiences.

  • Architecture and Design The vendor will perform an audit of current pages; then provide the following:

· Website architecture that includes a comprehensive site map

· Wireframes and design guidelines for the college homepage, as well as first, second and third level subpages

· Several page design options for homepage and all secondary pages, based on the external and internal assessments performed

· Templates that allow dynamic content functionality to populate multiple fields from one source, and a modular page building structure that allows full customization within the developed templates The new architecture and design recommendations must meet the outlined website goals, allow for consistency of design, and conform to the college’s branding standards.

3. Website Governance Based on the internal and external assessments performed, the vendor will evaluate the website design and development team’s recommendations for new website governance and refine and formalize including the following activities:

· Provide a documented website governance plan and user’s guide that includes defined roles, expectations, responsibilities and accountability of everyone involved in the website’s content development and management

· Help prepare the content manager/webmaster to provide training to content contributors

· Provide training materials including handouts, PowerPoint slides, video clips etc. (The vendor’s recommendations for this training and associated materials, along with associated cost should be outlined in the bid.)

· Provide recommendations for a systematic review of website governance

  • Content Development The vendor must provide the following:

· A plan for the development and review of content including the need for any meetings with program staff and the number of rounds for feedback (The plan should be described and associated cost itemized in the bid.)

· At least two training sessions for website content writing to the CR team that can be recorded and reused for future training

· Formal recommendations for a systematic review of website content

Due Date:

November 18, 2019, 11:00 AM EST


Karen Smith Director of Budget and Procurement Dorchester Administration Building Room D232 Chesapeake College 1000 College Drive PO Box 8 Wye Mills, MD. 21679

Relevant agencies include Ruder Finn and Finn Partners.

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