FMT Consultants, LLC

Santa Fe Christian School Enhances It’s Online Presence with Guidance From FMT Consultants, LLC

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Santa Fe Christian School (SFCS) is an independent private K-12 institution that partners with Christian parents within a Bible-based community, to guide students to embrace biblical truth, strive for academic excellence, and model Christ-like leadership to influence their homes, churches, and communities for Christ.

SFCS’s objective is to provide the optimal academic experience for all students so that they can maximize their individual potential. With average class sizes of 20 or less, highly dedicated and qualified teachers are able to develop personal relationships with each student. Offering rigorous Honors and AP Programs, SFCS attracts and challenges top academic students, preparing them for admission to leading colleges and universities. Other specialized programs include interactive science and computer labs, a broadcast studio, and an academic support program for students with learning differences.

By providing students and their families with an unmatched combination of academic excellence, co-curricular opportunities, safety and value, Santa Fe Christian School was recently selected as “Best Private School” in San Diego County.

Business Challenge
Because SFCS provides a product, a service, and an environment for its customers, its marketing department wanted to articulate the unique community aspect of SFCS within all marketing collateral, and in particular, within their website. The website needed to be updated and redesigned to convey not just academic excellence due to small class size and outstanding test score achievement, but also the unique community environment that each student experiences at SFCS.

Additionally, SFCS wanted to maintain control of its website and have the ability to write and post updates on its own without compromising the website’s visual appeal or usefulness. The website also needed multiple portals for different customer segments such as parents, students, faculty, and prospects. To add to this technological challenge, SFCS had hundreds of pages of content, extensive video and other media to display. So a flexible and dynamic platform was needed to mutually address the requirements of both SFCS Marketing and IT.

“It was astounding how FMT took this project to a finished product. Yet, we feel like we own it,” says Mr. Hays. “This was an extraordinary experience, with high impact for so many people. FMT made it seem easy, with no downtime or issue” says Jim Hays, Director of Technology at the Santa Fe Christian School.

The SFCS Marketing Department selected a local design firm to create a “look and feel” of the overall website and pages. Jim Hays, Director of Technology, needed to select a company that could take the designer’s mock-ups and wire frames and elegantly integrate them with Microsoft SharePoint.

Business Solution
Because of positive experiences working with FMT in the past, Mr. Hays selected them for this website overhaul project. “FMT knows their stuff. They work quickly, and if needed, can guide and direct me in helpful and appropriate ways, providing new options that I haven’t considered,” he states.

Initially, FMT met with the design firm to ask questions and clarify details, because the design firm was an Apple shop and had not taken into account if or how its website design would work in SharePoint. The next step for FMT was to develop specific programming in SharePoint that would utilize the colors and fonts already designed with pages that could be edited. Additionally, FMT developed the pages so that SFCS staff could independently edit them, addressing a key business requirement. FMT created a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor to add or change content so that administrators could successfully edit the website, producing a final page without ongoing technical assistance. This greatly added to the longevity and expandability of the website.

Using the capabilities of SharePoint, FMT also developed portals that can be accessed by individual role, such as alumni, staff, parents, and students. One more key function of SharePoint is the ability for multiple users to work within one space, providing a connection among parents, students, teachers, and alumni. This further promotes the life of the community, again meeting the requirements of SFCS.

Benefits
“Compared to our prior website, the new site is a significant improvement for both the user and us as site managers. The user experience is vastly improved through cleaner navigation, more intuitive organization, and the ability to view a more comprehensive array of media during their visit. We as the site managers benefit from having more options in presenting our message, simpler and familiar tools to edit and maintain the site, and technology we can grow into that will eventually save us valuable time and energy in our daily operations. In short, FMT has helped our website become more capable, modern, user-friendly, and media-rich,” says Mike Siciliano, Deputy Director of Development.

• Improved User Experience
Cleaner Navigation
Intuitive Organization
Improved and Expanded Media Options

• Improved Site Management
More Options
Simple and Familiar Tools
Technology for the Long Term

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