Sites@Duke Pro Releases

In March 2022, the Sites Pro team began rolling out new features and enhancements in regular updates called "releases." Details of each release are posted to this website and our Teams community.

View Release Notes

January 2022: general availability

Goal: Make the service available for general use by the Duke community

  • Consider user feedback and provide exceptional customer service
  • Expand user base through service outreach and additional site launches 
  • Maintain an efficient, stable system while making continuous system improvements
  • Look for future enhancements and updates on our News & Updates page

Summer 2021: initial Rollout

Goal: Successfully launch first Sites@Duke Pro sites

  • Launch in late July 2021, the first live production Sites Pro website
  • Implement policies and processes for governance, new site requests and launch, system enhancements and updates, training, and user experience consulting
  • Establish a product roadmap, communication channels, and a user community

Early 2021: Sites@Duke Pro Pilot

Goal: Soft-launch the newly named Sites@Duke Pro enterprise Drupal system with a pilot phase to solicit feedback and further improve the service

  • Continue working with the Sanford School to refine all aspects of the system, including stability and usability enhancements
  • Determine and implement strategies for service delivery and management
  • Partner with additional Duke units for the Summer 2021 pilot phase

2020: Partnership

Goal: Partner with the Sanford School of Public Policy as a primary stakeholder, redesigning as the first pilot website of the enterprise Drupal system

  • Review functional requirements and create a base build and underlying infrastructure – incorporating feedback from real users based on real content needs
  • Design and build a visual front-end theme with an updated Duke look and feel
  • Develop training materials for site admins
  • Form an internal management committee to oversee development of the system
  • Focus on implementing cost- and time-saving measures for customers

2019: enterprise Drupal Service inception

Goal: Build an enterprise Drupal service as a cost-effective and efficient mid-tier web development option for Duke customers

  • Create a Drupal 8 base build as the foundation of the enterprise Drupal service and custom Duke Web Services projects – offering a standardized "kit" with consistent features and settings, with most code updates occurring at the base build level
  • Architect a system using a Drupal back-end, Gatsby middleware, static front-end, OpenShift hosting infrastructure, and integrations with various enterprise Duke services
Project Goals
  1. Facilitate the successful move of all DWS Drupal sites out of Drupal 7 by the D7 sunset date.
  2. Use a standard code base to improve consistency across DWS sites, adhering to best practices for Drupal development, usability and user experience, security, accessibility, etc.
  3. Improve active projects by reducing the number of hours for standard website development; a more streamlined requirements-gathering process and a shorter development phase will speed up project timelines and potentially reduce budget estimates.
  4. Reduce maintenance efforts through standardization. Adhering to a standard Drupal feature set and supporting fewer custom sites will reduce planning, creative, and development time – thereby improving team availability and turnaround time for support requests, speeding up customer communication and response, reducing maintenance costs, and boosting client satisfaction.
  5. Provide a consistent and well-designed user experience for site admins – reducing time spent on development, documentation, training, and support.
  6. Allow for a "headless" development model – use Drupal to power the back-end, and a separate framework for front-end theming. This model capitalizes on Drupal's strengths as a database, while allowing for more custom, creative front-end themes, unencumbered by Drupal's inherent design constraints.