University of Pittsburgh

Web Site Production Process

Contact Communications Services Web Team Director John Cooper or Associate Director Christine Cornely to set up an initial meeting. From that point on, the production process will follow these basic steps:

Step #1:

Initial discussion with client

  1. Client completes the questionnaire which helps us understand the target audiences, evaluate strategies, and alternative options to reach the goals.

Step #2:

Communications brief/proposal and estimate

  1. Based on your initial meeting, questionnaire, and discussions, the Web producer assigned to your project will assemble a comprehensive communication brief outlining the overall goals of the project.
  2. The client will complete a requisition and approve the proposal.

Step #3:

Project plan

  1. The project plan will be the result of brainstorming sessions and any research conducted. Written by the Web producer, it will provide the client with the strategy, methods, and specific details of the project.
  2. The plan will include a content audit and a schedule with clearly defined milestones.
  3. The project plan is sent to client for approval.

Step #4:

Information architecture

  1. A site structure or information architecture (IA) is presented, discussed, and potentially revised. This is a blueprint of the site from a functional and organizational perspective.
  2. Client approves the IA.

Step #5:

Design concept

  1. Based on the strategy discussions, IA, and in accordance with the project plan, a design concept is created by an interface designer. It may be determined in the proposal phase that more then one design will be created.
  1. The design(s) is presented to the client.
  2. The client may request revisions if proposal/budget allows.
  3. The client must approve design before proceeding with development.

Step #6:

Development/Beta Site

  1. Once the design is approved and the content is provided, the site will be built.
  2. The beta site is presented to client online or in person.
  3. The client will provide any outstanding items.
  4. The site is proofread and tested.
  5. The client approves beta for launch.

Step #7:

Delivered to CSSD

  1. The Web site is delivered to Computing Services and Systems Development (CSSD) to be placed in production prior to being made public. The Web producer will work with CSSD to arrange for your site to “go live” on your requested date.

Step #8:


  1. A Web team representative, assigned by your project’s Web producer, will train you to maintain your site with Contribute, CMS, or appropriate system.