A redeveloped website has been identified as being hugely important for the orienteering community in New Zealand. Over the past two years significant work has been undertaken scoping, designing, developing, and implementing the new national body website. This has now been launched and can be visited at www.orienteering.org.nz.
We engaged with many people within the orienteering community when developing the specification for the website, and consulted with an advisory group, which included people with specialist knowledge and skills that enabled us to test our thinking – a special thanks to these people, as well as everyone else who participated in the wider process.
The new website is much more interactive than our previous website and is designed to better enable user generated content, which essentially means that many people can share information and interact through the different website features. It provides opportunities for people from throughout the orienteering community to chat, blog, or submit news articles (news articles have to be approved), as well as post and access information relevant to certain groups and topics. Events can be posted using functionality similar to what was previously done via Maptalk. We encourage people to check all this out and get familiar with the different features.
As you start using the website, please be aware that this is an evolving tool. A lot of work has gone into generating the content that you will read on there, however this is far from complete and there is much work required going forwards, to add to this information and start to improve the content. A special thanks to the many people who put significant effort into developing this content, and got it to the stage it is at now. The focus to date has been on getting the platform developed, and the basic content written to enable this to go live. There may well be the odd issue with the website itself, so if you come across issues or have any recommendations, please send these through to [email protected] Whilst we did a lot of testing, we expect some issues will get uncovered as people get into the guts of it.
Note Roger Woodroofe has kindly offered to pick up the role of webmaster going forward now that the website is live. He will oversee the management of the website, resolve any issues and bugs, and help prioritise any enhancements going forward. This will be a 6-month contracted role and we expect to advertise following this point.
You will also notice that the website has been branded with the new revised Orienteering NZ brand identity and logo. A separate communication has gone out explaining the new brand identity, however we hope you will appreciate the fresh look and feel the new brand identity gives to the new website.
What does the new website mean for you as an individual?
– Register your preferred user name on the orienteering.org.nz website now! Whilst you are at it, also like us on Facebook!
– Your contributions are welcome. All members and users can submit news, events and blog posts on the website. But most importantly you can join the many groups on the website and interact and discuss items from Mapping through to others such as Schools orienteering.
– Come to the website to find event details, news and information.
– Link to our website www.orienteering.org.nz if you have your own website.
– If your contact details (e.g. you are a mapper) are incorrect, or if you have noticed an issue, have a comment, or can suggest an improvement or idea, please advise [email protected]
What does the new website mean for your club?
– With the change in domain, the email address of the General Manager has changed to [email protected]
– Please update all links from the old site to our new domain at www.orienteering.org.nz The old domain will be shut down and redirection will occur
– We now ask that you post and maintain your events on www.orienteering.org.nz Existing Maptalk events details were imported into www.orienteering.org.nz/events/
- Similar to Maptalk, currently only the owner of the event can edit details in an event listing.
- On transfer, the imported events ownership was assigned to the administrator account and they need to be transferred back to the clubs ownership.
- To transfer ownership of events back to clubs and allow editing of details, we ask that all clubs email [email protected] identifying the email-address and user-account they would like their events transferred to. This could be an individual’s account or a new club account to allow multiple people to be able to edit the event.
- Please note each event needs to be checked and updated. We apologize for the extra work and any inconvenience caused during this change over. Many people have been working hard to minimise the work for clubs. Some issues did occur during the import from Maptalk and we ask event owners to refer to https://www.orienteering.org.nz/events-transfer-faq for details.
- Each events details can be formatted and include images. Further improvements are planned.
– Please link all your website event listings to www.orienteering.org.nz/events/
- Information on how to customise the link to a select a subset of events and the details on event RSS feeds will be included in the events transfer FAQ at https://www.orienteering.org.nz/events-transfer-faq
– Anyone with an orienteering.org.nz user account can post an event going forward – but remember that only they can then edit or delete it so clubs may want to consider having a club user with a club user name and password.
– The new events system allows more than one event type to be selected, reducing the need to add multiple event listings when different types are held at the same event.
– When running events or when there are things that happen locally, feel free to submit blog articles or discuss these through the website. The more that people can find out about it, the better.
– Please check that all information and club contact details are correct. Email [email protected] with corrections.
– Clubs can now use orienteering.org.nz subdomains. For example, Red Kiwi’s use rk.orienteering.org.nz to redirect to their current website and may use this address going forward when their new website launches.
– As part of the Orienteering NZ focus on making things easier for clubs and providing resources, clubs are welcome to contact the webmaster to discuss their club website presence needs and identify how the new site can support them.
– More information for your members will be posted directly on www.orienteering.org.nz. We will ensure we summarise important information posted online from Orienteering NZ as part of our monthly newsletters to clubs.
What does the new website mean for people that are content owners?
Content owners includes the Orienteering NZ committees for MTBO, Rogaine, Technical, and other content owners that have hosted orienteering content on different sites, or within the old website.
– It is intended and preferred that the new website becomes the “single source of the truth” in relation to Orienteering NZ content. We have been fortunate to have benefited from the personal efforts of many people over recent years who have taken accountability for ensuring content is accessible to the wider community. With a new improved platform, such as has been developed, we ask to work with you in relocating information into the relevant sections of this website. One of our goals is to ensure your continued input and ownership of the resources and we ask to work with you to find ways to achieve that.
– We ask that content owners take the time to “spring clean” all content, rather than simply transferring it over carte blanche. We would aim for any content to be uploaded to be the latest up to date version, rather than content which is out of date.
– We are aware of the importance and depth of static historic webpages and content. We ask content owners to work with the webmaster in moving these resources not included in the new site to the new archive.orienteering.org.nz subdomain.
– Existing orienteering services such as Routegadget (Routechoice), DOMA, and other services can be hosted as part of the new website in subdomains of orienteering.org.nz. orienteering.org.nz is intended as a resource to support the New Zealand orienteering community. Additional services can be added as they emerge.
– There are some documents, particularly in the “Resources” section, that need updating and we are working on a plan to get these completed.
– An image gallery can be created and if people have good images we encourage them to contact the webmaster at [email protected] for the current methods available to link, share or upload them. We will be improving our methods of doing this over time.
– We will aim to communicate more directly with established content users in the coming weeks, however please don’t wait. Feel free to get in touch with the webmaster to initiate any uploads of content, material and resources.
– The [email protected] email account will be monitored and when appropriate emails will be forwarded to the content owner or they will be copied in on the reply. To ensure you are included, send an email to notify what you maintain or want to hear about.
– Importantly, the new website encourages anyone to establish new groups, topics, or add information that could be of value to the orienteering community.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Why the new domain?
Firstly, we wish to thank James Scott (Hutt Valley) for making the domain orienteering.org.nz available for us to use. The new domain matches our new name and also aligns us with many other national sporting organisations that use .org.nz for their respective sports. The domain will also help people when searching for orienteering in NZ. We have re-directed our old domain across to our new domain.
How did you fund the development?
We managed to obtain some funding ($4,000) from the Lion Foundation to assist the development. Thank you Lion Foundation for your support of our sport. The rest of the project cost has been financed directly from Orienteering NZ. We have also benefited from many members donating hundreds of hours in volunteer time. We had tried for funding from another gaming trust, however were unsuccessful.
Who built the website?
We went out to market with our specification and asked for proposals for the website development. A tender process was used to provide us with a range of options. In our selection process we wanted a website that ideally used an open-source content management system (“CMS”) and that the development be provided by a reliable experienced commercial entity. In the end our website was built by Digital Hothouse using WordPress as its CMS.
Why were the specific photos on the website selected?
Quite a bit of work went in to try and find and get the best images possible to use on the website. It would be great to have a lot more images throughout the site and it is very easy to change the existing images. For example, it would be good to have more images in the carousel at the top of each page. If people have high resolution pictures that they think would look great on the website and convey appropriate messaging in line with the brand, please send them through to the webmaster. Images can also be added in various other sections throughout the site and to the Image Gallery in the Resources section. The hardest thing is finding good high quality images to be used and it would be great to have a good selection to draw on in the future.
Why are Events now on the National Body website?
Back in 2006 Fraser Mills and Simon Addison worked together on the concept of a one-stop-shop events listings for all orienteering clubs throughout New Zealand. At the time the National Body website couldn’t be set up to host the events listings, so it was instead set up on Maptalk. From that point onwards the National Body paid for the hosting for the events system as a service to clubs. We wish to thank Fraser for all his work in establishing Maptalk Events and his on-going work in maintaining and updating the system. It has been highly successful in helping clubs get more people at events and really bringing together a consistent look-feel for people from external to the sport. With the development of the new website we are now able to have events on our website and we want users from outside or new to the sport to come to the Orienteering NZ website and find all events there, rather than get pushed to a third-party website. The Maptalk events section will be phased out over time. The new Orienteering NZ website should become the centralised resource for posting all events.
For teams such as JWOC how will the website work?
When we have teams for the Junior World Orienteering Championships (“JWOC”) or the World Orienteering Championships (“WOC”) a number of people want to follow the activities of team members. Until recently this has generally be done through third-party blogging websites, however we are wanting to support them within the new site and bring these blogs directly onto the Orienteering NZ website – so keep your eyes peeled for this and help support our teams as they compete overseas. JWOC 2014 presence has started at https://www.orienteering.org.nz/groups/jwoc
What if we have any other questions?
If your email is about the website, please email directly to [email protected] and it will be forwarded to the appropriate people to provide a reply or take action.
A massive thank you to all involved in the project, especially to volunteers Erin Swanson (Bay of Plenty) for her leadership of the project (Erin was awarded the 2013 Administrator of the Year award at our recent National Prizegiving. Michael Wood webmaster for MTBO, Rogaine and Ski since 1998, Roger Woodroofe for maintaining the old nzorienteering.com website for the last two years and actively assisting with the new one, Fraser Mills for his management of Maptalk Events, as well as many others who have contributed to the project itself, or to the content that is now on the website.