Volunteer Opportunity: Provincial Webminister

I was appointed as Provincial Webminister on an acting basis when the previous office holder moved away earlier this summer, and although I enjoy doing this work, I already have too many things on my plate, so I am recruiting volunteers to take on the role.

If you’re interested in the position, please speak up at Commons this evening, or reach out to me directly.

I’d love to take on one or two people as deputies as soon as possible, and then turn the office over to one of them as of the August meeting. Of course, I’ll still be around, and am glad to provide ongoing support and assistance as needed.

Attached below are a job description and some notes about the tools and tasks involved — and of course, if you have any questions that aren’t answered here, please don’t hesitate to ask me!

Webminister’s Responsibilities

The webminister is responsible for keeping the provincial website up to date, posting meeting minutes, event announcements, and other relevant communications to the province. The webminister also manages the Province’s email lists and officer email accounts.

Our site runs on WordPress and all infrastructure is managed by the Kingdom Webministry, so you do not need to be a computer programmer or web development expert to succeed, but you will need to be comfortable using web-based user interfaces so that you can manage the content of the site and administer the tools that control kingdom accounts and other online services.

Support is available from former office holders and the Kingdom Webministry, so this is a great opportunity for hands-on learning and skills development. Reports are sent to the kingdom four times per year via a very simple web form. Kingdom policies are posted at webminister.eastkingdom.org.

Tools and Tasks of the Webminister

The vast majority of the webminister’s position is content-related: making sure that various kinds of announcements get posted, contact information gets updated, etc. All of these updates are done through our site’s WordPress interface, which is a point-and-click web application similar to other online content management systems.

A small amount of the work is more technical — managing email accounts in a tool called Fusion Directory which controls our Google accounts, or updating the WordPress configuration — but these usually only come up a few times each year, and the Kingdom Webministry has step-by-step guides for many of them, so it’s mostly a matter of reading carefully and following instructions, or asking their team for help when needed.

But mostly the job consists of paying attention to what’s going on in the province, finding out about recent news or upcoming events, and uploading the relevant text or photos to the web site, or doing a bit of rewriting to turn an informal discussion from the minutes into something publishable. Sometimes people will send the webminister content to get posted, while other times we need to reach out and ask people for information to fill in gaps.

There’s now a tool configured that causes every new post to the website to be automatically broadcast to the mailing list, which seems to be working well. Depending on the subject, we also frequently copy-and-paste the same message into Facebook, or coordinate with the Province’s Social Media team to ensure things reach the appropriate audiences.

There’s not a lot of paperwork; the quarterly report for the webministry basically just involves filling out a Google Form with your name and office, and confirming that you’re still actively updating the web site. When publishing photographs or someone’s creative writing, we need to get permission to do so in writing, although this has recently become easier because Society has clarified that it’s sufficient to get an email message from someone containing the text of the release form — we no longer need them to sign it in ink, which was always a hassle.

Provincial Officer Requirements

All Provincial Officers are expected to:

  • Fulfill the responsibilities of their specific office as described in the law and policy of the Kingdom and Province.
  • Send a brief report to the Officers’ Council every month, and participate in at least half of the Provincial business meetings, either in person or by phone/video conference when available.
  • Report to their supervising Kingdom officers if and as required.
  • Maintain an active paid membership in the Society. (If cost is a barrier, donated funds are available to cover memberships fees.)
  • Safely preserve any Provincial assets or regalia of the office which may be entrusted to their safekeeping.