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GovernorHub is getting a mini makeover

| 4 minute read
ARTICLE Orto

We’ve been working under the bonnet to strengthen our foundations for a while and it’s soon time to make changes to the pages that you will see.

Ellie cheshire modifiedDon’t panic though…  the changes are small and, most importantly, Ortoo the Owl is staying 😌

Find out what’s ahead and why this all leads to better ‘Governor-Hubbing’ in the future.

GovernorHub General Manager Ellie Cheshire explains more about our plans.

The background...

We now support two out of every three schools in England, which is great. Those of you who know us will know that we’re a team that’s genuinely passionate about effective governance and supporting schools.

An example of how much we’ve grown is how many documents we now store - at the last check it was 10 million! That’s quite a leap from 1.9 million just a few years ago. We’ve had to make sure GovernorHub is up to the job of managing this load - especially as we’re always looking to improve and add new features. 

Next Generation GovernorHub

Over the last 18 months, our engineers have built a new version of GovernorHub from the ground up using cutting-edge technology - a kind of ‘super-charged’ version of GovernorHub. This new technology provides bigger, sturdier foundations for us. 

You might remember last April, we had a short period of downtime on GovernorHub during a busy period which was very unusual for us. Ever since, we’ve been future-proofing the site so it’s even more robust. 

Our engineers have replicated every last detail of GovernorHub on new foundations with the aim of retiring old GovernorHub and moving over to the new site securely.  

We’re going to release Next Generation GovernorHub very shortly and ask some of you to test it for us, starting with our clerks feedback group. We know clerks will do a great job of finding anything that’s not working as it should and letting us know. When we’re absolutely sure the site is working perfectly, we’ll move things over. 

What’s going to change?

The new site isn’t very different from the old site. However, we are moving what we call ‘the washing line’ at the top of the page - that’s where you find all of your boards and groups.

Some of our clerks and busiest users can struggle with the washing line at the moment as there’s not much space and not all of their groups can be displayed on it which can be quite frustrating for them.

The washing line also takes up a fair bit of space which can be a problem if you’re looking at the site on a small laptop screen.

So we’ve taken the bold move of removing the washing line from the top of the screen and using a left-hand sidebar instead. I realise that’s not as interesting as we can’t call it a washing line but it’s actually going to be much more practical as it allows us to give you more space and will hopefully make navigating around the site much easier.

Over time, we’ll be able to add lots of new features as well that we wouldn’t have been able to do previously.

New features coming in 2024/25

One of the first things that we will be adding is a ‘super search’ function. At the moment, if you’ve got GovernorHub Knowledge and you’re looking for some expert guidance, advice or training you have to click on to the blue K icon on the washing line and go to a separate site. 

Our super search function will allow you to ask the question you want to ask from within GovernorHub - surfacing the answer for you right where you’re working.

We’re also releasing a new self-efficacy tool for boards. It has some of the functionality of a Skills Audit but much, much more too and will help boards to understand where and how they can be more effective.

Ortoo the Owl

It’s important to point out that Ortoo the Owl will be staying! It’s just that his perch is moving a little.

As I’ve mentioned, we’ll be doing some user testing of the new site over the coming weeks, especially during the school summer holidays when it’s quieter. Once we’re ready - we’ll make the move to the new site.

As always, feedback is really important to us so if you’re testing the new site, please drop us a line in the chat if there’s anything you want to mention. Our intention is that Next Generation GovernorHub will feel just as good if not better than the GovernorHub you’re used to.

Feedback

Thanks to everyone who has engaged and commented on our article and for the many feature requests - much appreciated.

As always, we have noted all of the suggestions and will keep track them.

We are always working to improve GovernorHub and Next Generation GovernorHub is part of this process.

Please put any future suggestions to us at [email protected] or use the help chat icon on the website.
Thank you for your continued support :smile:

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Comments

  • Charlotte 17 Jul 2024, 09:51 (3 hours ago)

    Hi Ellie, we love a bit of a makeover and remain big fans of GovHub!!
    Are you by any chance making any changes to the admin module? The current reporting structure on there is great but its a bit of an all or nothing funtions so some filters and the reinstatement of the complaince reprt would be amazing (especially moving into Autumn Term).

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  • Lauren 15 Jul 2024, 10:20 (2 days ago)

    I think it's great that you are continually developing and improving, particularly in response to user feedback.

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  • Catriona Tuplin 12 Jul 2024, 09:38 (5 days ago)

    Would it be possible to customise the downloads, I find I am doing a lot of cutting and pasting to ensure the information on the school website meets the requirements of the ESFA. It would be good to have an ESFA compliant download like you have for GIAS.

    Great news about the skills audit, an online board self evaluation tool will be really useful, perhaps an online governor visit form that uploads to governors profile and can be viewed by other members of the board. Something similar to doodle, Framadate - thank you for listening/ reading. I am looking forward to working with the new GovHub.

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    • GovernorHub Team 12 Jul 2024, 13:34 (5 days ago)

      Hi Catriona - We are looking at improving our reporting and downloads to be customisable in the coming months. An EFSA complaint report sounds like a great idea. Thank you 🦉

      An online governor visit form is also in our plans so watch this space!

  • Julie Clarke 12 Jul 2024, 07:34 (5 days ago)

    The most irritating aspect of governor Hub is that documents don't appear in chronological order with most recent first.

    Perhaps you could sort that out.


    Thanks.

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    • The GovernorHub Team 16 Jul 2024, 10:44 (27 hours ago)

      Hi Julie - Thank you for flagging this to us. We know that the document area needs a little love, rest assured it is on our list.

  • Lee Phipps-Bartley 11 Jul 2024, 22:31 (6 days ago)

    I don't know if it is related to your mini makeover, but the Governorhub app is no longer available on the Google Play store.

    This is unfortunate as the app is extremely useful for managing messages and documents on mobile.

    Has this intentionally been removed?

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    • The GovernorHub Team 16 Jul 2024, 10:48 (26 hours ago)

      Hi Lee - Unfortunately the app is built on old technology that is no longer compatible with Google Play 😔

      One advantage of Next Generation GovernorHub is that it will be completely mobile friendly 😊

  • Anna Richardson 11 Jul 2024, 19:57 (6 days ago)

    Totally agree with Paul Drake - also (and someone may tell me I can already do this) but it would be useful to be able to post an article in the Resources section and include a link to something I have put in the Resources folders - I know I can copy and paste the link but to be able to do it like I can on the noticeboard would be helpful. Thank you!

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    • The GovernorHub Team 12 Jul 2024, 16:37 (5 days ago)

      Hi Anna - This can be done 👍 Go to the 'chat' button at the bottom right of your screen when you're logged into your GovernorHub account to speak with a member of the support, and they'll be able to set it up for you.

  • Shirley Nield 11 Jul 2024, 13:35 (6 days ago)

    In recent months, links to documents in GovernorHub no longer work in the ‘App’ if clicked upon. Therefore, the user has to ‘find’ the document themselves in the document section. This deems the shortcuts to the notice board unusable and pointless.
    This has always worked previously and hopefully will again following the new site. Just wanted to make you aware of this negative functionality change.
    Thanks

    By submitting your details, you agree to have your name and email address stored for the purposes of managing your enquiry. For more information see GovernorHub's Privacy Policy.

    • The GovernorHub Team 16 Jul 2024, 10:51 (26 hours ago)

      Hi Shirley - Unfortunately the app is built on old technology that is no longer compatible with Google Play 😔 The good news is that Next Generation GovernorHub is completely mobile friendly 😊

  • Michelle Whiteman 11 Jul 2024, 10:58 (6 days ago)

    Can you have an option on the noticeboard where you can draft items to be posted at a certain time and date? Like a schedule send with emails?

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    • The GovernorHub Team 16 Jul 2024, 10:56 (26 hours ago)

      Hi Michelle - Love this idea 🦉Thank you for the suggestion.

  • Paul Drake 10 Jul 2024, 14:29 (7 days ago)

    We are sometimes 1 MAT and other times 10 schools. I would really love the flexibility to post a message on the noticeboard that goes to all the schools in our MAT rather than coming in/out of each school and doing it 11 times (10 schools and 1 Central team). I fear as our MAT continues to grow that my communication workload will increase proportionally. Any help greatly appreciated.

    By submitting your details, you agree to have your name and email address stored for the purposes of managing your enquiry. For more information see GovernorHub's Privacy Policy.

    • The GovernorHub Team 12 Jul 2024, 13:55 (5 days ago)

      Hi Paul - This functionality is available through the resources tab. Click on the 'chat' button on the bottom right of your screen when you're logged into your GovernorHub account and a member of our support team will be able to turn it on for you 🙂

  • jenny Barnard-Langston 10 Jul 2024, 12:25 (7 days ago)

    Thank you or the information about the updates. I was, at first a little concerned about the removal of the washing line but having read further I appreciate that there will be a side bar so I am sure it will be as good if not better.
    I am also pleased to note the super search function, I found the K a bit cumbersome. I am also please to know that there will be a new self-efficacy tool.
    Thank you so much to all the team for 'having our backs' and developing an already effective platform for governors.

    By submitting your details, you agree to have your name and email address stored for the purposes of managing your enquiry. For more information see GovernorHub's Privacy Policy.

    • The GovernorHub Team 12 Jul 2024, 14:20 (5 days ago)

      Thank you Jenny - We're always here to help🦉 Glad to hear you're enjoying the super search function too!

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