GET READY, TASFAA! Counting Down... 7

GET READY, TASFAA! Counting Down… 7

Hi TASFAA Members!

You may be wondering why we haven’t reached out about your membership expiration or the renewal process.  This update is rather lengthy, with some helpful Q&A’s below, so please do read it in its entirety.Image result for new system

Fall 2019 has been and will continue being a very busy and exciting time for TASFAA’s Web Services committee!  Our Web Services chair, Kevin Armalay has been working with Donnie Purvis, outgoing Membership Chair, to set up and configure the new back-end and website for our coming launch.

Membership records have been brought over into the new system, powered by MemberClicks.  In the background, we have been running both systems in parallel for the last few months while we work out as many of the issues as we could identify.  The conversion was not without it’s headaches, which have been about 99% resolved.  There are a few niggling issues with the conversion that we will need to ask you as members to assist with.  More information is forthcoming!

There will be a number of new features on the new website, which includes an integrated membership back-end, event registration features, and tons of social opportunities for TASFAA members to engage with their friends and colleagues across the state. More details to come!

When is this happening? The conversion has been ongoing and content is and has been being duplicated onto the new system/website.  The actual public launch of the new site is scheduled for approximately October 31.  That’s just one week from now! We are still busy building out forms and moving content. it is entirely possible that we will still be moving content well into November.

Approximately? Well, the long and short of it is that we have little control over these things.  Because we are changing providers and internet domain registrars and literally everything that TASFAA has and does online (this is not just a facelift, it is a whole new everything), a lot of stars must align for the conversion.  Our old provider needs to release the domain registry for the site, our new provider needs to register the domain registry, and then once all of that is done, new DNS directions have to be sent out to the servers around the globe that route web traffic. It is not an immediate process.  There may be a 24- to 48-hour window in which you will not have any access to either the old or the new But don’t fret, we’re prepared for that possibility, and want you to know that it is a possibility!

How do I get to this new site?  Do I need new bookmarks?  Yes and no.  The conversion will maintain as the site you will still type into your browser, but if you bookmarked any sub-pages within the domain or any specific documents or files, those bookmarks will no longer work.  We are working diligently to ensure that content is easy to find, and will welcome any suggestions for making the site easier to navigate.  In fact, we’ve even built a form in the new site where users can report bugs/errors/omissions to Web Services, and it will be located in the footer of every page!

What does this mean for my membership?  We know that the membership year runs November 1 to October 31.  You may be wondering why you haven’t been able to renew your membership on the website, or how you can pay for your new year’s membership.  Because our conversion is running on the same timeframe as the membership year, we are automatically giving every member school and vendor a 30-day grace period. Once the conversion is complete, we will reach out to each school’s and vendor’s primary contact, with instructions on how to update your institution’s profile as well as how to update individuals’ profiles, how to add people to your school’s membership, etc. We will also send out information to all individuals registered in the system with information on how to update their own profiles as well.

What do I need to do to prepare?  As they say, knowing is half the battle!  So for now, just knowing that this is about to happen is enough to be ready.  Once the new site is active for everyone, we will be sending out login instructions to access the members-only sections of the site.  Much of the site will live behind a Member Login, but other parts of the site will be publicly viewable.

What will my Login be?  Under the old site, your login was typically your first initial followed by your last name, and in some instances, a number.  Rather than carry over this scheme and require you to remember yet another login, we’ve made your login your email address.  You will be required to set a password before you can begin using the members-only sections of the site. More instructions to follow. Stay tuned.

The following are instrumental in this conversion, and I’d like to extend a great big thank you to:

  • The 2018-2019 TASFAA Board of Directors, specifically:
    • Delisa Falks
  • The 2019-2020 TASFAA Board of Directors
  • All of the 2018-2019 Committee Chairs and Committee Members, specifically:
    • Donnie Purvis
    • Keith Hoelscher
    • Fall Conference Committee and Training Committee for working directly with ATAC (the old provider) while I focused my attentions on the new system
  • All of the 2019-2020 committee Chairs and Committee Members

As we count down to the official launch of the new site, I ask you to be patient and gentle with me, should you find something amiss or awry!

Kevin Armalay

Chair, Web Services Committee

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