Fit-for-purpose content management

The purpose of a content management system is to facilitate the human process of managing content throughout its lifecycle, from conception, through use, to deletion. Shouldn’t such a system support your way of communicating?

The function of content management is to handle fundamental business communication. As such, your content management system should be a fit-for-purpose implementation, not a commodity that does not align with your specific needs.

Your way of communicating

Communicating well is difficult. This becomes particularly self-evident when the audience is not immediately to hand; when our interactions are handled through digital systems.

Ways of thinking

To communicate, we generate a narrative, stringing together thoughts and concepts. If our message does not resonate with our audience, meaning is lost; the communication fails.

In person, we can react to the audience, adapting nuance. We are rarely conscious of how we choose our words.

Non-real-time communication demands a different approach. We must be aware of what we communicate, and how. We have time to analyse our message, and its construction.

Layers of translation

When our communication is managed through a digital platform, we have two choices:

  • We can treat the platform as a vessel for a single channel, whereby we craft the message for the specific environment it will be presented in, or
  • We can realise that there are countless channels, in an ever-evolving landscape, and our message needs to adapt to them all.

When delivering an adaptive message, we need our systems to convert it from a generic form to forms suited to specific channels and audiences. With adaptive the content delivered, we can optimise the storage model.

The vendors’ paradigms

Most content management vendors, whether focused on a single channel or adaptive content, promote their storage model as the best.

This incurs an unwelcome side effect: they expect you to create content directly within their models. They forget that – just as your message needs to be translated for multi-channel delivery – the crafting of the message requires translation from your domain model and mental paradigms to their storage model.

This translation must be part of the system, not a mental process. You should not be burdened with it every time you interact with your message.

Author experience

The field of author experience ensures that systems used for interacting with content suit the domain models and mental paradigms of those managing it.

Fit-for-purpose value

With content being critical to business, anything that could corrupt the intended message creates risk. Incorrect – or inconsistent – content can have serious consequences: financial, legal, and reputational.

To reduce the risk of errors, we must ensure that human touch points with content management processes suit the business’s domain model. This applies to all content types: marketing material, operational information, technical and support content, et cetera.

Content flows

Much content within an organisation will move between departments: for example, marketing material derives from operational and technical data. Used content interacts with multiple systems.

Human touch points in the handling of content will introduce errors. The alternative depends on integrated content systems: solutions that allow information to flow where it needs to.

The Excolo advantage

At Excolo, we believe in content integrity; that solutions designed to allow natural human interaction with content benefit the organisation, and that content should flow seamlessly around the organisation.

Your domain, your model

Excolo brings deep knowledge of mapping processes and content interactions to fit-for-purpose digital interfaces. We ensure that your systems are modelled on your needs.

We do not want you struggling to adapt your content processes to a vendor’s model.

Technology agnostic

We are technology agnostic. A suitable platform on which to build your solution is one that can adapt to your content management needs – not one that forces you to adopt its paradigms. We keep your people, and your processes, at the forefront of the author experience design cycle.

A balanced approach

Depending on the scale and complexity of your business, adapting a platform to suit you may be a massive undertaking. Our aim is to provide a robust foundation for your content systems, and a roadmap to build it out.

Such a platform will prepare you to embrace whatever communication channels emerge in the future.

© 2014, Excolo