Yale SOM and IT collaborate on Alumni Digital Experience Discovery project

October 15, 2020

The Yale School of Management (SOM) Development and Alumni Relations Office has been collaborating with ITS since January 2020 on a digital experience discovery project focused on understanding the needs of SOM alumni and what it is they are looking for from a digital experience with the school. The SOM team reached out to ITS for support as they are looking for a new platform that will simplify the SOM alumni user experience enabling alumni to more easily connect and engage with the school.

The project kicked off with a number of interviews with SOM alumni from all over the world and from a range of backgrounds and SOM degree programs. The interviews were one way in which ITS was able to gather user insight about SOM alumni and understand their mindsets, needs, and behaviors. ITS also interviewed SOM stakeholders, conducted user testing on the current alumni platform, and collaborated with SOM on sending two rounds of a survey to SOM alumni that yielded several hundred responses to capture additional insight.

Katya Ilina, Director of Advancement Operations, and the SOM Development and Alumni Relations team were deeply involved in the project providing ITS with the knowledge needed to complete the nine-month discovery project.

“It was very rewarding to partner with the ITS User Experience & Design Services team,” Ilina noted. “We are excited to have a strategy for SOM alumni digital connection with the school that focuses on their needs and perspectives. It is all the more important to streamline our digital resources in the current environment of primarily online events and interactions.”

The project culminated with a User experience (UX) Philosophy Guide for SOM that provides analysis of all the user data, outlines and illustrates user behavior, needs, and values. The guide also provides the SOM team with a set of personas, themes and recommendations that will help guide them as they search for a new digital platform for SOM alumni.

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