Content Management Solutions – how not to deploy

Outside my work I’ve been involved with an organisation where I maintain content for some web pages which were raw html code, of course I cheated and used Dreamweaver.  Well the organisation decided that they wanted a consitent theme across the various websites and would like to extend the authorship by moving away from HTML junkies and deploying a content management solution.  A good aim which I support!

In this situation it has been handled terribly.  First of all the communications were poor, secondly the timing was too aggresive and thirdly there was no assitance with content migration (i.e. it was a complete re-create).  So now most of the local and county sites which formed part of the national organisation have no web presence.  My words of caution for anyone looking at this now would be:

  • plan plan plan
  • communicate communicate communicate
  • give examples of how to move content
  • give videos not just long documents describing the new solution
  • give people enough time to complete the job (if this is a volunteer driven activity multiply your work based estimates by 10).
  • If you are making a major change to a web site implement RSS feeds for subscription to changes in content.

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