Politely communicating that your site needs a total makeover
July 22, 2009 1:29 PM Subscribe
How does a lowly unpaid blog contributor tell his/her bosses that the whole site needs a major redesign?
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've had the privilege of being invited to contribute for my former employer's new blog, and I've been enjoying producing some content on a weekly basis or so as part of a team of 5-6 people. However, their entire content management system is archaic, buggy, and needs a major systematic and aesthetic overhaul. I'm talking no RSS feed, disappearing posts, a comment system that doesn't even allow users to leave their names. Worst of all, I have a sneaking suspicion that I'm the only person involved in this whole project who is tech-savvy enough to be aware of solutions such as Wordpress that could fix this situation (or Drupal, if they wanted to fix their whole site.) And I'm no IT expert myself.
I'm having to balance my distaste (to put it mildly) for the way they're running this new blog with my admiration for the organization in general for allowing me to contribute, as well as my important and delicate professional relationship with them. The main communications/IT person has served as a reference on job applications in the past, and I care very deeply about how these important contacts view me if I end up working in their industry full-time in the future. I just graduated college and lack full-time employment, so I know that having this opportunity is an important privilege and professional and personal relationship I would never want to damage.
I guess this is a question not only as to whether I should or should not say something, but if I should, a question of communication. How can I express that their site, particularly this blog, has such an outdated look and feel that it must be negatively impacting their credibility without sounding like a snooty, ungrateful young upstart? Can I offer to help them redesign their site, or at least get them a Wordpress, without sounding or acting like I know better than they do? Is there a way to avoid the risks and pitfalls of this situation besides shutting up and putting up with this web 0.5 silliness? Similar experiences and suggestions for content management systems or blog hosting sites are also welcome.
throwaway email: firstname.lastname@example.org