Expert Tips on Implementing an Enterprise Content Management System

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On getting employees to use the system

Involve business users in design and rollout of the CMS system. A good way to do this is to identify a few “power users” in each department that contribute to taxonomy and functional design, and then become resources during training and rollout. — Philip Kurinsky

We communicated to our team through quarterly update presentations, newsletters, suggestion boxes, department meetings, and so on. We have forums for our users to communicate any questions or suggestions for improvements to the technical support team. Communicate as often as you can and in many different ways throughout the startup of the project. —Teresa Welch

Get users involved early on in the project management team. You are going to need advocates at the user level to ensure a successful rollout. Listen to these representatives carefully and make sure that your rollout plan takes advantage of these advocates—especially when it comes time to checking out whatever training and documentation is going to be used in the rollout plan. — John Blossom

Adoption begins with executive sponsorship. Let’s face it: Nobody likes having to use a new system even when the benefits will be large. Having senior-level communication reinforcing the need to manage content rather than just email people helps build momentum. Letting people know that all user stats are tracked is a good way of reminding them that management is keeping score. — Mark Suster

Meet the Experts

John Blossom’s career spans more than 20 years. He founded Shore Communications Inc. in 1997, specializing in research and advisory services and strategic marketing consulting for publishers and consumers of content services.

Tony Byrne is founder of CMS Watch, a vendor-neutral analyst firm that evaluates content technologies. He oversees the publication of detailed evaluation reports that review vendors head-to-head within various technology spaces, including web content management, enterprise portals, enterprise content management, web analytics, and enterprise search.

Leonor Ciarlone is senior analyst for The Gilbane Group. She has more than 18 years of experience analyzing, designing, and developing content-centric applications in a variety of industries.

Joshua Cohen has owned and operated JDC Consulting, an ECM consulting practice, since 2002. He has 20 years of experience in information management, starting in library science and automation systems and moving to knowledge and content management in the late ’90s.

Philip Kurinsky is a VP of IT corporate finance at Fidelity Investments. Over the past 20 years, he helped develop ECM as a consulting practice discipline at Deloitte Consulting and served as director at Darwin Partners, focusing on developing CMS and BPM strategies for major clients.

Suzanne Mescan is VP of marketing for Vasont Systems. She has more than 20 years of experience in the information management and publishing industry.

Mark Suster is VP of Salesforce Content and is the founder of the online content management system, Koral, which was purchased by last spring. He was also the founder and CEO of BuildOnline, a content collaboration company focused on the engineering and construction sectors.

Sue Wear has been with GE Healthcare (formerly IDX Systems Corporation) for over 14 years. She oversees the administration of the Vasont content management system, including content storage and retrieval, user access and security, and workflow.

Teresa Welch is a Strategic Business Analyst with Lexmark. She was selected to lead the implementation of XML authoring and content management tools in 2003. Her team completed analysis, selection, and installation of content management tools.

Tony White is the lead analyst for the Gilbane Group’s web content management consulting practice. Over the past 10 years, he has served as an analyst at both Giga Information Group (now Forrester Research) and the Yankee Group, and has held senior marketing roles at Interwoven and BroadVision.

Articles that are part of this Special Section:

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Mashing Up Web Analytics and Web Content Management
Managing content and measuring results have been two distinct domains. Increasingly, the two are converging, as site publishers and marketers seek to take action based on measurable results.

Content That Travels Well: The Global Content Management Challenge
Companies are only as good as the content they deliver, so it pays to go past thinking globally and start structuring content that can play as well in Pakistan and Paris as it does in Peoria.

The Courtship of CRM and CM
Customer relationship management and content management have traveled parallel paths inside the enterprise. Though the two systems have a great deal in common, they rarely interacted, until now.

It’s All About Community: Prerequisites for Web 2.0 Content Management
As companies seek to create stickier, more interactive online experiences, they look to Web 2.0 approaches, creating new CM challenges.

Expert Tips on Implementing an Enterprise Content Management System
Insights into the difficult process of ECM purchase and implementation.

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