Web Services continues to evaluate Web CMS solutions and vendors. As this progresses, we’d like to share some information on WHY we are moving in this direction. Let us know your questions.

What is a Web CMS?

Content management refers to the system and processes whereby information is created, managed, published, and archived. A content management system (CMS) provides the necessary infrastructure for multiple persons to effectively contribute content and collaborate throughout this lifecycle.

Online information must be continually reviewed and updated by content editors so that other content consumers, including customers and search engines, have access to the most up-to-date version.

Subject matter experts are forced to more rapidly maintain and update information for their constituents. Prior to the Internet, it was acceptable to publish new information on a quarterly basis, whereas now important information is expected to be immediately available online.

A CMS typically offers:

  • Easy content creation and editing for non-technical content contributors
  • Access rights for security
  • Structured workflow processes for content approvals
  • Archival and versioning of content
  • Templates for consistent output
  • Content check-in/check-out services for distributed users

Benefits of Using a CMS:

  • Subject matter experts can update their online information quickly and efficiently without technical intervention.
  • Common tasks like checking for dead links, archiving old pages, and generating navigational menus are done by the CMS.
  • Content can be scheduled in advance to be published at a specific date and time. The CMS can also expire content at a predefined time.
  • Associated images and files for content are published by the CMS, reducing the burden of finding the necessary assets.
  • A frequently updated site will encourage customers to return.
  • The audit trail, available at both the user and content level, provides a snapshot of the history of content changes.
  • With version control (automatic backup as changes are made), users have peace of mind that any mistakes will not cause lost information.
  • Content is presented within pre-defined templates whenever possible. Templates help maintain a cohesive look and feel, creating a professional image. The use of consistent navigation menus and layout does not force the visitor to relearn site conventions.
  • Brand integrity is maintained by limiting layout choices in a manner consistent with university style guidelines.