As we approach June Design House launches, many detail-oriented tasks continue: Hiring and recruiting, systems building and testing, and the scheduling of regional and Saxotech training sessions for newsrooms.
Special sections: Production of sections created by newsrooms will be centralized to a group especially assigned to special sections, overseen by GateHouse News Service editor Lisa Glowinski in Downers Grove. This arrangement makes sense for two reasons: 1. The high level of integration between special sections and news service content. 2. The need to have special attention given to these sections, rather than having them fall into the general Design House daily/weekly mix.
Editors who've already undergone launch calls with their Design House director should expect to have special section conference calls set up with Lisa Glowinski by the end of the week. She will send an FAQ document in advance of the call. Editors who have not undergone launch calls should expect a special sections call one week after the Design House launch call.
Regional training: The first regional training sessions (for week 1 launch newspapers) have taken place for newsrooms in Illinois and Massachusetts.
Policies and procedures: We've finalized Design House policies and procedures and expect to share a customized version for newsrooms within a week. We also will share forms to cover such areas as late/changed ads, early/late deadlines and special design requests).
Launch calls: We expect to set up August launch calls in the next few weeks. Many July calls have already taken place.
The future Design House area is ready for a rapid metamorphosis: Old cubicles are gone, ceiling tiles are down and the carpet is messy from all the work. Within a week, the room will be worked on by painters, electricians and carpet installers.
Check out the images Conor Plunkett is posting on Facebook (overall construction and new sales area).
The mini kitchen next to the Design House room received new flooring and paint Friday.
Data and phone cabling work began Monday.
A new door was cut last week for Human Resources on the first floor so that a nearby conference room could be used without people walking through meetings (the Design House addition has reduced Rockford's conference room space).
The best place to view construction progress is in our Facebook gallery, which is updated at least each Friday, if not more.