Crucial to finding the right content management system is the features and capabilities included and available. There’s nothing quite so frustrating as migrating your web properties to a new publishing platform only to discover it doesn’t do everything you need it to do, or that in a year it’s obsolete.
A CMS has two main groups of people it must answer to: IT and authors/content creators. It can be difficult to strike a balance between the needs of these two groups. By examining the feature and capability requirements of each and using those as guidelines for choosing your CMS, you can hopefully satisfy both sides.
For this portion, we’ll focus on the content creation part of the equation. Content creation (and editing) is the function of most concern to the users who will write and edit what is on your website. A basic checklist of functions would include:
Simple authoring environment
Users must be able to log in to the “back end” of the website and easily do their work. They must be able to add and edit text, embed images and video, and the like without using special software or even knowing HTML.
Support for multiple users
More than likely you will have a number of people who work on your website. Each department may have control over what their portion of the website includes. You will also have administrators responsible for approving content and making broader changes.
Content will be edited many times. Versioning (or version control) keeps prior copies of the content in the event that a mistake is made, a page is accidentally deleted or what-have-you. A piece of content may be rolled back to or restored from its previous version with ease.
In part 3 we will look at some of the more technical requirements of a CMS.