Frequently Asked Questions
If you are interested in creating a website with us, then please use our contact form to schedule a meeting to discuss this further.
I heard that my website needs to comply with Columbia's Website Accessibility Policy, what do I need to do?
Accessibility is built into the CUIMC Distribution. This means that most of "heavy lifting" has been taken care of in regards to the overall accessibility of any standard CUIMC Distribution website.
However, as content creators on your site, there are additional actions you need to take to ensure that your content is accessible as possible to people with disabilities. For more information on the steps you need to take, please view these resources:
The Web Services team (the developers and maintainers of the CUIMC Distribution) is available to answer any questions you may have about websites or other digital promotional tools. We would recommend checking our user guides first to see if you can resolve your issues on your own. Otherwise, please contact us for support using one of the following methods:
First, outages are something we work hard to avoid but can happen. We apologize for the inconvenience. Regardless, we are most likely already aware of the issue and are working on a resolution thanks to system monitoring mechanisms put in place by our team. If this is a major outage impacting any of our sites, we will post it on our System Status page. For all other inquiries, please create a ServiceNow Request, or contact us.
Website update requests should go to a primary or secondary Web Liaison. If you are unsure who that is, please contact your Department Administrator. If you need to contact Web Services directly, please use our contact form.
- The difficulty and complexity of the issue.
- The number of requests we have already in the backlog.
- The amount of staff we have available for support.
Typically resolution times are as follows for the two rates we offer:
- Standard Requests: 2-5 business days
- Expedited Requests: ASAP
For more information on our support rates, please review our support pricing.
To create or update a Symplr Directory profile, please refer to our Symplr Directory user guide.
If you are looking for help with your CUIMC email, computer, or network access, please visit the CUIMC IT Department for assistance.
If you need to contact Web Services directly, please use our contact form.
Training and Access
To get access to a site that has already launched, you'll need the following:
- A Columbia UNI. If you don't have one, contact your Primary Web Liaison about getting one.
- Complete the required trainings. See the questions below for a list of the required trainings.
- Approval from your Primary Web Liaison. Once someone has completed the required training, they will need to contact the Primary Web Liaison for your site and inform them they have completed the required training. Once approved, the Primary Web Liaison will create a support request with CUIMC Web Services using ServiceNow, granting the associated user access, including what their project role will be for the site. If no role is indicated, they will be assigned as a user by default.
If you are unsure who your Primary Web Liaison is, please contact us.
All users will need to take the following trainings to gain access to any Distribution site.
- Web Content Strategy Training
- Basic Distribution Training
- Advanced Distribution Training: News & Events (Optional, but recommended for users dealing with news or events)
You can view upcoming trainings and register on our Training Schedule page.
All users will need to take the following trainings to gain access to any Platform or legacy site.
- Web Content Strategy Training
- You can view upcoming trainings and register on our Training Schedule page.
- Platform Training or Site Specific Training (case-by-case basis)
- Platform site trainings are only scheduled based on demand. If you need to attend one, have your Primary Web Liaison put in a request to Web Services.
- Legacy site trainings are not typically scheduled. If you need to attend one, have your Primary Web Liaison put in a request to Web Services.
If you don't know whether or not your site is a Platform or legacy site, or who your Primary Web Liaison is, please contact us.
Regularly scheduled trainings are included in annual costs and there is no limit to how many people attend or how many times they attend.
Any training scheduled outside our regular monthly trainings specifically for a particular group or site will be charged at the standard or expedited hourly support rate that it qualifies for. For more information on our support rates, please view our support pricing page.
If you are working with Web Services to launch a new Distribution site, you should follow these guidelines:
- Keep in mind, typically, trainings are scheduled to occur once a month, so please plan accordingly.
- Take the Web Content Strategy Training ASAP. We recommend having this completed before you start working on your content with a content manager.
- Take the Basic Distribution Training right before your soft Launch. We recommend having this completed right before your soft launch so that the information is still fresh in your mind.
- Once trainings are complete, and our digital project manager approves access, you will be given credentials to the site.
If you need access to a Distribution site that has already launched, you should follow these guidelines:
- We recommend taking both trainings as close together as possible in order to keep the information fresh and reduce the time to access.
Typically we have 1 of each training scheduled every month depending on demand and availability of our team. Please check out our training schedule page for exact date, times and information.
If there is a training you are interested in, and it is not listed on our schedule, please contact us.
With the exception of the Advanced Distribution Training, our trainings are intended for users of all levels.
We recommend that anyone involved with content for the website attend the Web Content Strategy Training. Anyone who requires access to edit any portion of a site, must also attend the Basic Distribution Training. Sponsors or stakeholders are not required to take training, but it is recommended as a way to ensure coverage in the event of team member changes.
The Advanced Distribution Training is recommended only to users who already have access to a site and wish to learn more advanced techniques.
Unfortunately, no. Other than our Open Office Hours, all trainings are conducted on a staging site and access is only available to clients during the training.
Currently, all trainings are done remotely online. So, a computer, internet access, and a UNI are needed for all trainings. Additionally, we recommend having the following:
- Questions on how to do things relevant to your site or content
- Writing materials to take notes
- Sample content to create test pages (recommended for all trainings, except Web Content Strategy)
Yes. Drupal training by other organizations, such as CU IT, or trainings completed in the past for legacy systems, are not applicable to this system.
Access is granted based on your project role. If no project role is indicated then you will be given the User role by default.
I made a change on my site and it isn't showing up / something looks strange on my site - what do I do?
The first action you should take is to clear the cache on your browser. If clearing your cache does not fix the issue, please contact Web Services with the following information:
- Which site you are working on.
- An explanation of the problem you are seeing (include screenshots if possible and include URLs to specific pages on your site).
- If applicable, provide any notes about which actions you were taking on your site before this issue started occurring.
Images sizes vary based on where they are being used. Visit our Image Guidelines user guide to get detailed specifications.
No, not unless you are using one of our built-in widget types. (See below for a list.) Content and widgets generated by third-party services may cause security, accessibility, and maintenance problems if embedded directly. Embedding a widget that has not been properly tested with the CUIMC Distribution could have any of the following issues:
- The widget could display improperly (especially if it loads an application/product that requires some kind of authentication).
- The widget could be using insecure code that will pose security risks for your site visitors.
- The widget could load functionality that is not accessible to people with disabilities.
In order to prevent these issues, tags used to embed external content, including but not limited to iframe tags, object and embed tags, and script tags, are stripped from your page content when saving.
Several of our widget options allow for embedding of outside content, such as:
- Google Business Hours
- Google Maps
- Google My Maps
- Vimeo Videos
- Youtube Videos
- Paypal Buttons
If the information you need to display is from an external site or application and is not included in the above list, you can simply link to it instead of embedding it on your site.