The Office of Communications is introducing the below policies and procedures to frame the context of its collaboration with internal and external constituents. These communications policies and procedures are put in place to ensure guidelines in day-to-day operations for faculty, staff and students.

University Publications Guidelines and Procedures

The Creative Services at the Office of Communications is responsible for the University’s image in print, graphic identity, visual standards, and the quality control of its publications.

Our team provides professional and creative resources to create high-quality publications that are consistent and best represent the excellence of the Ahfad University for Woman programs.

To make sure that all publications are uniformly of high quality, the design team reviews, designs, and oversees the design of all university publications.

Project Initiation

In order to have a smooth process, on-time delivery, and satisfying results, the following procedures must be adhered to:

  • Fill out Communication Briefing Form (Appendix F)
  • We will be contacting you to schedule the first meeting with the communication officer
  • To minimize any confusion or unnecessary mistakes and/or delays, all coordination should only be communicated through the communication officer for your project

 

The following are to be provided for the initial planning meeting:

  • An idea of the purpose and audience of the project.
  • The complete text or information that will be used (hard and electronic copy). The text should be fully edited (unless you want us to provide editing services).
  • Photos or art work you want to use (if you have something specific in mind)
  • A rough budget estimate (for design and print)
  • Project timeframe and deadline for delivery
  • Optional: samples of publications you think might help us understand what you are looking for in terms of style and aesthetics

Publication Timelines

It is very essential to review these timeline estimates and, accordingly, plan your projects in advance to better serve you in a timely fashion. We reserve the right to decline any project that does not conform to these timelines. Though rushed jobs are not likely to be accepted, exceptions can be made based on several factors and at the full discretion of our team. This may also incur extra labor and print costs.

Design

Project Type   Simple Job Complex Job
Poster 2 weeks 4 weeks
Flyer 2 weeks 3 weeks
Invitation Card 1 week 2 weeks
Banner/Roll-up Banner  1 week     2 weeks
Brochure  3 weeks     5 weeks
Booklet 4 weeks   6 weeks
Book 6 weeks  16 weeks

In addition to the design time estimate, you need to take into account time needed for production and printing. These timelines apply after you approve and sign the printer’s final proof (usually offset printers send a proof; digital printers may send samples in case of complex jobs or large quantities).

Printing: Digital

Project Type   Simple Job Complex Job
Poster – (B&W/Colored) 2 working days       4 working days
Flyer – (B&W/Colored)             2 working days                       4 working days
Banner/Roll-up Banner   2 working days                       4 working days
Invitation Card                        2 working days                       4 working days
Brochure-(B&W/Colored) 4 working days  6 working days
Booklet-(B&W/Colored)           5 working days 8 working days

For jobs that require mounting or assembly, you need to specify your requirements beforehand. This might add to the time estimate, depending on the complexity of the project.

Printing: Offset

Project Type   Simple Job Complex Job
Poster         3 working days  5 working days
Flyer   3 working days                       5 working days
Invitation Card  Invitation Card  7 working days
Bookmark   4 working days   8 working days
Ticket   4 working days  7 working days
Program   5 working days                      8 working days
Brochure  5 working days 15 working days
Notepad 5 working days   15 working days
Stickers   5 working days       10 working days
Booklet 10 working days    15 working days
Book     15 working days   30 working days

Note: These time estimates are approximate and are subject to change depending on the quantity, the complexity of the job and the availability of required material specifications in the market.

The Initial Meeting

At the preliminary project meeting we set with you, you need to provide information on your audience, the purpose of the publication (or website), your budget, the delivery date, etc.

During this meeting we will let you know if the project will be designed in-house. In case all our designers are fully booked, our office will work with an outside freelancer and ensures that the final design meets the AUW publications standards.

Manuscript Preparation

  • The text that you will be using should be complete and fully edited when handed to us (unless you want us to do the editing for you at an additional cost).
  • Kindly avoid using indents, italics, underlined text or other types of formatting used for aesthetic reasons. Only keep the formatting that needs to be included in the design for functional reasons.
  • A complete and edited text will help you avoid delays due to changes made at later stages.
  • Photo captions and call-outs should also be submitted with the text.
  • If you are revising an existing publication, you can make minor changes directly on the printed publication. For complex changes, a new digital (MS word) copy of the text should be submitted, following the guidelines above.

Artwork

If your publication is to include photos, you can choose one of the following options:

  • In-house: Our office maintains a diverse library of digital photos. Our coordinator can send you several images to choose from at no cost.
  • Client-supplied: You can bring your own photos and we will include them in your publication. You should bring them during the first meeting so that the designer makes sure they meet the requirements below:
  • All photos should be of high resolution: 2000 pixels width or height minimum, depending on the final size of printing. The larger the publications, the larger the pixel count.
  • The photos should have good colors, lighting and sharpness.
  • Web images and pictures taken by a mobile phone are not usually accepted.
  • Photo-shoot: We have a professional photography services at your disposal. If you do not find the desired photos in our library and do not have photos of your own, you can schedule a photo shoot. Your desire to do so should be expressed during the initial meeting to reserve a place on the photographers’ schedule. A photography fee is applicable. Policy on photography requests and payment is available on our website. 

Design

  •  After the initial meeting, the designer will lay out the text and artwork chosen. He/she will come up with a few options for you to choose from.
  • The communication officer will then schedule a second meeting to show you the different design options.
  • At this point you can still make minor changes or corrections. However, major changes might affect the deadline.
  • The changes and corrections will be incorporated and the chosen option will be sent to you to get your final approval on design and text.

Bidding

-              Our office follows the University’s bidding requirements to obtain optimal quality and price quotations from different printers.

-              We must receive quotations from minimum 3 printers and then choose the best bidder (with best price/quality ratio).

Guidelines for reviewing a design proof

Proofreading and ensuring accuracy of text provided is your responsibility, so please make sure to review the proof carefully before we proceed with printing. When reviewing the second or third proof, check it against the first one to verify that all the changes or corrections were made.

  • Verify the page numbers.
  • Check the placement of photos and captions.
  • Check the hierarchy of titles.

Print Production

-              Once we receive all the quotations from printers, we will choose the best bidder (in terms of price, quality, and delivery time) and send you the price and delivery deadline by e-mail to get your approval. Once the price is approved, we send the job to print.

  • The printer will send us a final proof before printing the job. This proof is usually low-resolution but if there are key photos (e.g.: cover) in your publication, they will be sent in high resolution to be able to check the colors and the quality. The printer’s proof is first checked by the design team. When approved, we will send it to you to get your final approval and signature. Proofs are then returned to the printer to complete the project.
  • Once the publications are delivered to our office, our team will ensure quality control.  The communication officer will then notify you that your publications are ready to be picked up from our office.
  • You will be asked to make arrangements to have someone pick up your publications.

Photography

  • Requests for photographs taken outside the AUW campus will be charged even if the Office of Communications plans to cover the event or activity (as a media story), unless prior agreement with the Office of Communications has been arranged.
  • Requests for photographs of events on the AUW campus which the Office of Communications does not plan to cover (as a media story) will be charged.
  • Requests for photographs of events on the AUW campus which the Office of Communications plans to cover (as a media story) will not be charged.

Payment

Clients will be charged per session:

  • Minimum charge per session: (Agree on minimum charge payment)
  • Charge for one hour session: (Agree on charge per one hour session)

Communication and Marketing Policy

A. The Office of Communication is the official custodial to directing internal and external communication, and representing the University’s position to the public.

B. The Office of Communication is responsible for developing and producing all marketing and communication material related to AUW and its entities.

C. All official communications and publications issued by AUW entities should be subject to approval by the Office of Communications.

D. AUW entities are responsible to notify the Office of Communication of new stories, projects, news, events, publication, or any other important activity within the minimum and maximum duration required for each project (as per the University Publication Policy). 

E. AUW has the authority to prioritize certain AUW projects over others according to their importance, time frame, and available resources.

F. A University-wide communication task force serves as the core communication network that collaborate to share the University stories and activities with the internal and external stakeholders. 

G. The Office of Communication can provide consulting and advice to AUW entities regarding marketing and communication activities, in addition to execution services. Execution costs of schools/entities related activities will be covered by the schools/entities budgets.

H. The Office of Communication is responsible for the printing cost of official University publications that are not specific to any individual school/entity (such as graduation booklets, reports, student magazine النصف الواعد, others.)

I. AUW entities are advised to review the specific policies issued by the Office of Communication regarding Event Management, Media, Social Media, and Website.

Media Relations Policy

A. Centralize all media relations under the Office of Communications.

B. Any request to cover stories and news in the media needs to be communicated to the Media Relations Officer at least 7 days before the announcement. Exceptions could be made by the Office of Communication for the news that is hot in the media.

C. Stories about major events and ceremonies are cleared to be covered in the media. A detailed list of major University events should be specified in coordination with the president.

D. Activities and events with the government and international organizations could be covered in the media only after the clearance from partnering institution.

E. Minor AUW activities and events could be covered in the media only after securing the president’s council clearance.

F. Stories and news covering accomplishment and achievement can be covered in the media after securing the Communication Manager clearance.

G. The Media Relations Manager and the Communication manager decide on the optimal channels that can be used to ensure suitable media coverage.

H. Interviews with any AUW member (faculty, staff, or student) should be coordinated and cleared by the Media Relations Manager.

I. Special permission to cover or record stories at AUW campus in only secured through the Office of Communication. Accordingly, approval from the Communication Manager or the Media Relations Manager should be put in writing, and an AUW supervisor will be assigned to coordinate the visit and accompany the visitors. 

J. Participants in interviews or in any type of media coverage should sign a Letter of Consent allowing the interviewer and the University to use and disclose content as they see fit.

* If Media Relations Manager was not available for any reason, alternatively contact the Communications Manager or Communications Officer to support you with media relations.

Social Media Policy and Guidelines

Introduction

Social media are powerful communications tools that have a significant impact on organizational and professional reputations. Because the use of social media may blur the lines between personal voice and institutional voice, the AUW has established the following policies to clarify how best to enhance and protect the University, as well as personal and professional reputations, when participating in social media. Both in professional and institutional roles, employees are expected to follow the same behavioral standards online as they would in the real world. The same laws, professional expectations, and guidelines for interacting with students, parents, patients, alumni, donors, media, and other University constituents apply. Employees are accountable for any institutionally related content they post to social media sites.

Entities Affected

This regulation applies to all employees and units of the University.

Definition

Social media are defined as media designed to be disseminated through social interaction, created using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques online. Examples include but are not limited to: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, other.

Best Practices

These guidelines apply to individuals posting on behalf of the University or an official University entity, though they may be helpful for anyone posting on social media in any capacity.

A. Think twice before posting. Privacy does not exist in the world of social media. Consider what could happen if a post becomes widely known and how that may reflect both on the poster and the University. Search engines can turn up posts years after they are created, and comments can be forwarded or copied. If you would not say it at a conference or to a member of the media, consider whether you should post it online. If you are unsure about posting something or responding to a comment, ask your supervisor for input or contact the Office of Communication at AUW.

B. Strive for accuracy. Check your facts before posting them on social media. Review content for grammatical and spelling errors. This is especially important if posting on behalf of the University in any capacity. 

C. Be respectful. Understand that content contributed to a social media site could encourage comments or discussion of opposing ideas. Responses should be considered carefully in light of how they would reflect on the poster and/or the University and its institutional voice. 

D. Be active. Social media presences require diligent care and attention. An effective social media site requires regular updates and fresh or engaging content. 

E. Consider your audience and its potential reaction to your content. Be aware that a presence in the social media world is or easily can be made available to the public at large. This includes prospective students, current students, current employers and colleagues, and peers. Consider this before publishing to ensure the post will not alienate, harm, or provoke any of these groups. 

F. On personal sites, identify your views as your own. If you identify yourself as a AUW faculty or staff employee online, it should be clear that the views expressed are not necessarily those of the institution

Policies for All Social Media Sites

A. Do not post confidential or proprietary information about the University, its students, employees, patients, or alumni. Employees who share confidential information do so at the risk of disciplinary action or termination.

B. Adhere to all applicable University regulations, policies, and procedures. Use Social Media in a manner that complies with University regulations, policies, and procedures.

C. Adhere to copyright and fair use law. When posting, be aware of the copyright and intellectual property rights of others and of the University. 

D. Do not use University logos or trademarks without permission. Any use of AUW logos, trademarks or other images must have prior approval. Do not use official logos, trademarks, or any other University images or iconography on personal social media sites. Do not use AUW’s name to promote a product, cause, or political party or candidate. Questions should be directed to the Office of Communication.

E. Do not be the first to announce University or departmental news on a social media site unless preapproved by the concerned department or the Office of Communication. The Media Relations manager is the official spokesperson for the University (See Office of Communication Structure). 

F. Comply with the Terms of Service of any social media platform used.

G. If you post on behalf of an official University unit, the following policies apply, in addition to all policies and best practices listed above

- Notify the University: Departments or University units that have a social media page or would like to start one should contact the Office of Communications to ensure all institutional social media sites coordinate with that of AUW and its content. All institutional pages must have an appointed employee (full time or part time) who is identified as being responsible for content.

- Acknowledge who you are: If you are representing AUW when posting on a social media platform, acknowledge this.

- Use approved photos and University logos: Your University social media presence must use photos that accurately depict your department or unit, and approved logos for your area of the University. The Office of Communications provides approved photos and logos for various areas of the University. To receive logos in a downloadable format, contact the Office of Communications.

- Have a plan: Departments should consider their messages, audiences, and goals, as well as a strategy for keeping information on social media sites up-to-date. The Office of Communications can assist and advise you with your social media planning.

- Link back to the University: Whenever possible, link back to the AUW website. Ideally, posts should be very brief; redirecting a visitor to content that resides within the AUW web environment. 

- Protect the institutional voice: Posts on social media sites should protect the University’s institutional voice by remaining professional in tone and in good taste. No individual unit should construe its social media site as representing the University as a whole. Consider this when naming pages or accounts, selecting a profile picture or icon, and selecting content to post. Names, profile images, and posts should all be clearly linked to the particular department or entity rather than to the institution as a whole.

Non-Compliance

Non-compliance with this policy may result in any or all of the following: 

- Limitation or revocation of individual or unit rights to use or participate in University-related social media

- Removal of posts or social media accounts

- Corrective or disciplinary actions and sanctions.

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