I've enjoyed watching the "How many are in your department topic?
" the last few days, but after giving it sometime and reading through the responses - I wonder if one of the things that's missing might be "What is the title and spectrum of "your department"? :)
Sometimes we are compared to other institutions and asked "Why can't we do that?" only to find out when we call those schools that they may only have a few (5 or less) folks in their "Web Services" department, but after probing a little deeper and ask what sort of services they offer to support the web. Sometimes I find that they may write code, but don't maintain the servers. They may edit and approve content for the site, but they don't have a training program for users.
I see a lot of one person / very small "departments", but what are those departments called and what are they expected to do? Do they purchase, install, and maintain the hardware for the servers? Do they manage, patch and upgrade a CMS? Do they enter all the content for the entire www.XXX.edu
site(s)? How many sites do they support? Do they edit and approve all the content for the entire site(s)? Do they train folks how to write for the web and how to use the system(s)? Do they survey users and do regular usability testing with students, faculty, and others? Do they handle all the emails that come in with "web issues"? Do they test and install new systems for the web? Do all web systems within the institution go through the "department"? One of the biggest questions is "Are all the people who support the web at different institutions within the same "department"/organizational unit or are they spread out in other areas too?"
Just something to think about and something I'd be very interested in learning as well. We are trying to do that sort of consolidation at our school so we can most efficiently utilize all the resources across the school. That way we can also find out how many additional folks we really need to have the best web presence possible.