Ready Or Not, The 2011 Website Reviews Are Coming

It’s that time of year again and we’re tooling up the 2011 Orchestra Website Reviews. Everything is being set into motion a little later than normal this year in order to accommodate my consulting schedule so that means you have a little bit of additional time to make sure your site is up to date and ready for evaluation.

What To Expect If You’re A Reader

Not unlike last June’s compensation reports, the website reviews will benefit from the added functionality that accompanied Adaptistration’s recent theme updates. This means more interactive content and an improved user interface.

2011 will include expanded review criteria; most notably, the inclusion of specific mobile ready functionality. It will also have a redesigned grading formula that shifts the weighted averages more toward user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) elements. Fortunately, these changes remain in lock step with the review’s overall intent which is the fairly and accurately comparing websites throughout a range of budget sizes in a single review.

What To Expect If You’re Orchestra Is In The Reviews

If you’re the head of your orchestra’s marketing, public relations, and/or IT department, keep an eye out for an email from me with details and a link to the 2011 review survey. The surveys began as a way to make the reviews as comprehensive as possible and each year they do exactly that by providing additional context and an opportunity for each orchestra to provide their peers and Adaptistration readers with details about their website that go beyond the items included in the review.

I can’t stress how important these surveys are as they are your primary conduit for offering up first hand info about your website. The survey only has a dozen or so questions each year so they don’t take much time and you will be able to complete them online right here on a secure page at Adaptistration.

Last Chance To Get In On The Fun

Although there’s a definite threshold that determines which orchestras are included in the reviews, that doesn’t mean exceptions can’t be made nor does it prevent a mistake in the form of inadvertently overlooking an orchestra that otherwise meets all of the review qualifications.

What is certain is that the reviews are limited to professional orchestras in the US and Canada which means we absolutely, positively can’t make exceptions for opera organizations or ensembles outside those two countries. We would love nothing more than to expand the reviews to include those organizations but time and resources are consumed by the existing evaluation and compilation process. [sws_css_tooltip position=”center” colorscheme=”rosewood” width=”450″ url=”” trigger=”caveat” fontSize=”12″]But we’re always open to expanding the reviews through direct sponsorship; so if you’re interested in doing so, get in touch and let’s see what we can do. [/sws_css_tooltip]

As such, if you want to verify whether or not your group is included or you want to see about getting your ensemble in on the fun, just ask.

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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