Done Never Is

Never By Olivier H on flickrLast week, David Aponovich from ISITE Design wrote a nice piece titled Avoiding the CMS Death Spiral on ISITE’s CMS Myth blog.

If you don’t know who ISITE Design is, you should…especially if you are in the digital marketing space. Those guys are top notch. I tried to hire them many times when I was working at the Boy Scouts but could never get the projects funded (might just be why I’m not there anymore).

Note: I tend to use “CMS” to mean “Web CMS” or “WCMS” – in this article these terms/acronyms are interchangeable to match what David originally used it in his post.

In Avoiding the CMS Death Spiral, David writes a nice piece that anyone looking at choosing a Content Management System should read.  In the article, David offers up a few pieces of advice, with one being:

Realize too that if you invest in a CMS, you’re now in the software business – whether you like it or not. A CMS project is never “done”. Staff accordingly for post-launch maintenance and support, or be prepared to pay an agency to maintain the platform for you (to one degree or another).

A CMS project takes on a life of its own, much like any other software project. That said, most organizations undertaking a Content Management System project fail to understand that real underlying issues that they will face during and after the project. Most people think a CMS project is as simple as selecting, paying for and implementing a CMS….but it isn’t.

A CMS project is everlasting.  There will always be ‘something else’ to do.  There will always be a new feature or some functionality that will be needed for some new web feature or function.

Done never shows up on a CMS project.  Done never is.

Of course…there are times of ‘done’ according to a project plan.  The goal of a project can be reached.  There is a point when a CMS is ‘implemented’. But…there will always be changes  and there will always be new items to add.

That’s what organizations need to understand. Many think a Content Management System is something you buy and install and use.  But, I’ve never found that to be the case.  There’s always something more to be done.

So…if you are currently looking at implementing a Web Content Management System, think long and hard about how you are staffed today and how you will be staffed in the future.  Don’t make the mistake a former client made in thinking that after the purchase and implementation of a CMS, he could reduce headcount. In fact – he needed to increase headcount or at least move headcount around to ensure proper staffing.  That particular project was never staffed properly for the long term from the IT group’s side.

I’ll leave you with part of my comment on David’s post. I wrote  (I noticed a typo in my original comment – I’ve left it here for completeness – but should be buy):

One of the biggest mistakes I’ve seen with CMS projects is the failure to staff. Most clients but [sic] a CMS platform, pay a vendor to implement it and then expect ‘done’ to arrive one day.

That day never shows up because there are always constant changes coming. Always new features and functionality for CMS driven websites. Done never arrives so clients always feel like they are spending way too much to ‘implement’ their CMS…when in reality they are just seeing the reality of the software business. Done never is.

Image Credit: Never By Olivier H on flickr

Links for August 29 2010

  • Social Software Needs to Be a Layer, Not a Feature, In the Enterprise by Eugene Lee on Enterprise Social Software Blog | Socialtext

    Quote: We believe we can avoid the fate of information silos by building a “Social Layer” in the enterprise architecture. The social layer will span all employees across all organizational boundaries, and connect them to key enterprise applications beneath it in the architectural stack. We recently introduced Socialtext Connect, which is the beginning of our approach to enabling this Social Layer.

  • Enterprise Social Media & SMB – One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other by Matt Ridings on techguerilla talk

    Quote: No one will dispute that there are huge differences between the way a large enterprise business operates versus that of a SMB (small or medium business).  All of the cliche’s about a large, plodding, politically motivated behemoth or a small, naive, financially handcuffed operation exist for a reason.  They all contain a grain of truth to varying degrees.  Yet, for all of their differences they share the same basic strategies when it comes to leveraging various mediums for the most part, just at different scales.  And that’s how it should be.

  • Beyond Social CRM: The Open Innovation Revolution by Hutch Carpenter on I’m Not Actually a Geek

    Quote: The idea of bringing customers into the process of defining the products and service of your organization is one that is gaining a lot of steam. One manifestation of that is the increased interest in Social CRM. In this scenario, companies engage their social customers for feedback and marketing purposes. Taking it a step further, Mark Tamis and Esteban Kolsky see the higher purpose as organizing the business around the newly social customers

  • The “Social” in Social Media by Skip Cohen on Marketing Essentials International

    Quote: I’ve spent so much time talking about social media as a marketing tool over the last year, that I honestly forgot about the word “social” in its name!   If you want to have some fun today, track down an old friend – there are few activities that could make your day richer

  • The Age of Disposable Software by Scott Brinker on Chief Marketing Technologist

    Quote: The market is evolving at breakneck pace, with new competitors springing out of bed every morning, with zero legacy hang-ups, eager to snap up your audience. The power of SaaS — and the age of disposable software — is that it makes it easier for you to harness the leading edge of innovation. But SaaS just helps with the plumbing and the economics — you still need to provide the activation energy to break free from the past and embrace the new.

Links for Dec 2 2008

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