First Impressions

Let’s face it when BRIAN was launched last year the staff profile pages, which drew information from it and were written in something called VIVO, were less than satisfactory!  Lots of technical problems with the input data from BRIAN and its presentation was not up to BU’s normal standard.  You expressed your concerns in no uncertain terms and we have now put it right.  Working with academic colleagues IT and M&C have worked hard over the summer to construct a completely new interface, not in an obscure computer code but in something we can maintain and evolve easily ourselves.  They have done a brilliant piece of work, so BRIAN has a new set of external clothes and they rock!

After all, first impressions count and the staff pages are a crucial portal through which we present our academic achievements and expertise; and in reverse it is a lens for the world to view and search the wonderful talent that exists here at BU.  The new pages go live at the start of October 2013; they are finished and ready but there is an upgrade to BRIAN due in September which needs to be installed first.

 The improvements include:

 –       A more professional look and feel

–       The opportunity to showcase selected publications

–       Users can upload their own photo (via BRIAN)

–       Improved searching by name, keyword

–       Closer integration with the research themes

–       Fixing the technical problems we have experienced

Since we have developed this interface ourselves here at BU we can develop it further and continue to respond to your feedback.  The BRIAN team are managing the development of the replacement.  If you would like to know more about the project, please email

 The staff profile pages will continue to use data drawn from BRIAN so please keep updating your content in BRIAN since a profile is only as good as the input!  There should be no impact on staff during the switch to the new pages, although there may be minor disruption to the availability of the profile pages during the transition.  Let me know what you think of the new pages?

One Response to “First Impressions”

  1. Susanne Clarke

    Well done Matthew !! and the teams involved – the improved BRIAN sounds great and everyone loves a new outfit.
    A big gold star for drawing attention to the importance of first impressions and great team effort to make something better based on listening to feedback is definitely music ( of any variety, rock, music hall..) to my ears in my role as Head of Service Excellence and letting us know that feedback has been valued and acted upon – is that all important accessory, often forgotten, but can make or break a new outfit.
    I also wanted to add that I love this blog and the insights it provides us all – the academic snippets and great achievements of colleagues.