9 Ways to Improve Your University Wayfinding
Oppna Digital

9 Ways to Improve Your University Wayfinding

Remember the first time you walked on your college campus? Flipping through pamphlets to locate your next class, seeking out signage to point you in the right direction – that first week on campus feels like you’re living in a giant maze! Fortunately, with today’s digital wayfinding solutions, giving students the resources they need to swiftly navigate their way around campus is easier than ever before.

Yet despite today's innovative digital signage technology, it’s still inevitable that students will feel the occasional stress of feeling lost or intimidated by their sprawling surroundings.

That’s why it’s important that every school has a chance to take a step back and reassess its university wayfinding system to ensure that it’s as accessible and inclusive as can be.

To help your school provide the best campus experience possible, here are five ways to improve your university wayfinding.

1. Implement Inclusivity

A college campus features a wide variety of walks of life, with each student having their own distinct needs when it comes to navigation. Your university wayfinding system needs to be as inclusive as possible, which means incorporating several features and resources that make the user experience as accessible as possible.

This includes:

  • Multiple language options

  • Sufficient color contrast for readability

  • Closed captioning and braille reading options

  • Send-to-phone capability

  • ADA-compliant kiosk stations and digital signage screens

  • Mobile access for users to leverage audio on their personal device

Such features and more will ensure you’re catering your university wayfinding system to all your students.

2. Incorporate Student Feedback

If your students are the ones utilizing your digital wayfinding technology every day, then it’s a good idea to get their input on how you can improve your wayfinding resources.

Try conducting monthly or bi-monthly interviews with randomly selected students to assess their opinions, experiences, and notes on your wayfinding system. This way, you can keep your ear to the floor about what’s proving successful with your wayfinding software and hardware and what could potentially use an upgrade.

Additionally, surveys can be incorporated into the Wayfinding user interface.

3. All-in-One CMS

Your Content Management System (CMS) is the key to ensuring that your digital wayfinding stations provide up-to-date information and guidance to thousands of students campus-wide.

This is why it’s so important to install an intuitive and easy-to-use content management system that makes it as simple as possible to upload or edit wayfinding content instantly. Your wayfinding CMS should allow you to publish content in seconds from essentially anywhere with an internet connection.

By having a one-stop shop to manage all aspects of your wayfinding content, you can quickly provide instant notifications to all your students when needed, such as class or event cancellations, safety and security alerts, or any other important announcements.

4. Smartphone Synchronization

Let’s face it: Almost every single one of your students is constantly on their phone. So why not cater your wayfinding technology to their smartphone dependence?

Investing in mobile application development for your university wayfinding will ensure that every student has exclusive access to campus mapping resources and gives you direct access to providing them with any important notifications or campus news.

In addition to a mobile app for your college campus, the ability for students to scan QR codes to access the digital interactive wayfinding from their mobile browser provides another level of convenience.

Plus, smartphone synchronization eliminates excuses for being late to class, right?

5. Having a Wayfinding Support Team

If any hardware, software, or content management questions or issues arise, it’s important to have a digital wayfinding support team at your side to provide you with timely response and resolution.

If your digital wayfinding provider is not as responsive as you would like to be to resolve any technical issues, then it’s definitely time to consider switching things up.

6. Customizable Routing

We all know how independent students like to feel, so why not give them the ability to customize their campus wayfinding experience? Try implementing wayfinding software that enables users to customize their routes based on their own individual preferences, such as accessibility requirements, shortest distance possible, or more scenic paths.

You can even offer customization options for language, campus themes, and map display settings. Users can save their wayfinding preferences in their university mobile app, giving themselves a more personalized wayfinding experience that ensures more inclusivity within the university community.

7. Real-Time Updates

Patience is now always a virtue on today’s campus, especially when it comes to forgotten due dates! Your university wayfinding system should integrate real-time data feeds to provide users with up-to-date information on a wide variety of campus-related activities, such as parking availability, shuttle bus schedules, and event locations.

Real-time features can also notify users of any disruptions or changes to their planned routes. They can also be integrated with existing campus communication channels, such as websites, social media, and campus alert systems.

This dynamic feature enhances efficiency for everyone involved and will be sure to reduce any user frustration.

8. Instant Emergency Notifications

Students, faculty, and staff should be notified as quickly as possible whenever there's an emergency on campus. Custom university wayfinding software allows you to easily incorporate emergency notification systems into digital wayfinding platforms to disseminate critical information during campus emergencies.

Whether providing evacuation routes, updating assembly points, or providing emergency contact information during crisis situations, the faster you can keep everyone in the loop, the safer everyone will feel.

You can also enable geo-fencing capabilities to send location-based alerts and instructions to users in emergency scenarios, ensuring that users can easily access evacuation routes and safety protocols.

9. Promote Sustainability Initiatives

College is the time for young adults to start truly thinking about how they interact with the world around them. So why not utilize your university wayfinding system to encourage more eco-friendly habits that can also help students get to class on time?

Your campus wayfinding app can promote more sustainable transportation options, such as walking, biking, or using public transit, with real-time updates on bus arrival and departure times.

You can also highlight bike racks, pedestrian-friendly pathways, or eco-friendly transportation hubs on campus maps while encouraging carpooling and ridesharing by including designated pick-up and drop-off zones.

Custom University Wayfinding Solutions From Oppna Digital

Looking to upgrade your university wayfinding technology? At Oppna Digital, we have the team, services, and technologies to equip your campus with an all-encompassing digital wayfinding system!

Contact Oppna Digital today to schedule a consultation with our digital wayfinding specialists.  

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