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Content Management System =/= Management of Content

Content Management System =/= Management of Content. The CMS honey trap. Myth 1: The ‘IT Solution’. Myth 1: The ‘IT Solution’. psychological diversion: we can ‘solve’ the web site! lure of the project: CMS becomes the reason, rather than the means

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Content Management System =/= Management of Content

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  1. Content Management System=/=Management of Content

  2. The CMS honey trap

  3. Myth 1: The ‘IT Solution’

  4. Myth 1: The ‘IT Solution’ • psychological diversion: we can ‘solve’ the web site! • lure of the project: CMS becomes the reason, rather than the means • ill-defined goals: “process” becomes secondary to the “project” - the implementation of the CMS • myth of ‘the end’ – it’s done! Project finishes – management lose interest

  5. Myth 2: ‘Enabling content owners’

  6. Myth 2: ‘Enabling content owners’ • inexpert authors: they will break it! fonts, grammar, images, links, writing for the web • inexpert editors: not usability experts, information architects or marketing specialists • devolved = not joined up: approval/editorial processes aren’t effectively applied in devolved environs • lack of vision: content owners do not see or understand ‘the big picture’

  7. Myth 3: global changes

  8. Myth 3: global changes • architecture: CMS monolith ill-suited to institutional/external changing needs and practices • flexibility: web is driven by immediacy: needs, opportunities, challenges to which a CMS is ill-suited • standards and accessibility: today’s standard is tomorrow’s deprecated tag; one man’s accessibility guideline is another man’s barrier

  9. Myth 4: saving money CMS

  10. Myth 4: saving money • setup costs: specification; acquisition; configuration; integration • staffing costs: technical, managerial, support, authors, editors • ongoing costs: changes, training support, in bed with the enemy (vendor) • no end in sight: where’s the exit strategy?

  11. So what’s the solution? I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat. We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We have before us many, many months of struggle and suffering.

  12. Huge paradigm shift! • new ‘things’: procedures, roles, tools • web über alles: changing the institutional practices (hundreds?) of years • change management: disruption, distraction during setup; learning; resentment, rejection: it was fun when I could use Dreamweaver

  13. Identifying: clients’ needs organisation’s needs content - information audit content owners/ stakeholders the ‘big picture’ Organising reallocation of duties: writers and publishers training in writing for the web editorial controls review processes - cyclical What is Content Management? 1

  14. Enabling authority quality assurance sign-off review Consolidating technical skills medium literacy architecture vision What is Content Management? 2

  15. Conclusion • CMS does not itself deliver many of the purported benefits • DEFINE your solution • Solution involves people, processes & (last & least) technology • A CMS is just one possible technology CMS can be an expensive distraction - is it really necessary? • You’d better know what you want it to do • You’d better know what it will take to do it • You’d better be happy with the end result

  16. Mike McConnell – m.mcconnell@abdn.ac.uk Iain Middleton – iain@imiddleton.com

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