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Web Content Management Activities

November 22, 2010

Presented at the Web Content Management Masterclass convened by Marcus Evans Professional Training, on 22 and 23 November 2010, at the Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotel.

Web Content Management Process
The following diagram illustrates the breadth of potential web content management (WCM) activities that occur in both WCM projects (including strategy development and review) as well as those required in the normal content publishing and consumption process (ongoing maintenance and operation).

The chart illustrates both the complexity of the WCM exercise and the variety of skill-areas that can be required to deliver optimal results.

Web Content Management Activities

Activities involved in Web Content Management

(Source: David Warwick – Open Publish 2007)

Interpreting the Illustration

Two Cycles – The whole illustration creates a full assessment project (Review Cycle) that includes the six stages: Plan, Create, Process, Publish, Consume and Evaluate (as illustrated in the blue bar at the top of the diagram and the outer red box). The smaller red box (and arrow at top) illustrate the ‘Constant Cycle’ of web publishing which includes the inner stages of Create, Process, Publish and Consume. The content cycle is occurring all of the time within a web content management (WCM) framework and the outer is usually considered in ‘project’ terms as the refinement of the platform in its entirety. I have often found that project management models often ignore the process of content consumption by the audience(s) and the interplay of this dynamic (after all, why is the content produced in the first place?).

Process Steps – Each potential activity is listed in approximate order, with a ‘blue bar’ that shows where in the cycle (roughly) the step sits. Many activities cross over more than one cycle stage. Although not all projects involve every stage, the list is a good ‘ready-reckoner’ for activity and for considering project requirements (scoping), process design and resourcing. Makes a fine argument for resource allocation and internal dialogue about the complexity of online publishing.

Skills and Roles – The colored circles and ‘task allocation legend’ give an idea of the type of training, skills and organizational role that is required to most effectively deliver on each of the process steps. The effect is to show that single person or small team projects require a great breadth of understanding, and that in larger organizations and teams, the web content management process cuts through organization roles and silos, making process and control potentially problematic and complex.

The diagram is not exhaustive and by itself does not address the full complexity of web content management, nevertheless it makes a useful tool to refer text bases scoping documents, process design and other WCM activity back to as a visual ‘cross-check’. I hope that you find the diagram as useful as I do. Please post any comments on your experience of process and feedback on the validity of the diagram.

(Revised following the completion of the Marcus Evans ‘Web Content Management Masterclass’ Conference in Sydney in November 2010)

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