EWS versus Webmastering: ACT’s Role

Our group continues to get calls about building websites for departments, so I wanted to clarify what we do and don’t do here in ACT.

We are responsible for deploying and maintaining enterprise web services (EWS), but we don’t actually build or manage websites (“webmastering”).

Let me use Microsoft and PowerPoint as an analogy.

Microsoft distributes a product called PowerPoint that is used to create presentations. It’s a powerful tool that can be used to create very simple presentations, or very complex presentations.

The product is designed to be DIY (Do It Yourself), or, you can always go out and hire someone, or contract some company to build your presentations for you. But what you normally don’t do is call Microsoft and ask them to build the presentation for you.*

So, in this analogy, ACT is like Microsoft, and EWS is like PowerPoint. We are ramping up the services so site owners can do it themselves, or, if they like, they can hire or contract webmastering support to build and maintain websites. ACT does not build or maintain websites.

So where does one find good webmastering support? Well, you can hire staff directly (please talk to your HR generalist about this option). Or you can contract with a group that does this sort of thing. And fortunately, at UofT, we have several groups that do that. To start, I would recommend talking to your divisional IT group to see what they offer.

I hope this helps folks understand ACT’s role. Please write if you need further assistance. Thanks.

* PS: Yes, I know that Microsoft does have a “Professional
Services” division, and you can pay them to provide
support, but that division is independent of the software
division, so it’s a red herring in my analogy 😉