There are many critical elements to ensure your digital channels and the related content are of high quality and fully compliant with the law. Perhaps the most important of all these is people – those that you rely on to deliver strong digital experiences. This is not only your immediate team, but also the wider group of people responsible for channels and content, such as local website teams and a wider group of content owners and editors. Depending on the size and complexity of your organisation, the number of people involved can span from a handful to hundreds.
These people, often at the periphery, are responsible for content, upload and editing, correcting issues, reviewing content and more. Their contribution is critical, but central teams often struggle to make sure that they contribute in the right way. For these local contributors, their digital and content activities may be a minute slither of their “day job”, or a low priority because they simply have too many other things to do. Meanwhile for the central team, maintaining publishing standards, correcting issues and content improvement starts to feel like “herding cats”. It can be a nightmare.
So, what can central digital teams do to make sure the wider digital team carry out what they need to do? There are three main elements to focus on:
Let’s explore these three areas in turn.
Outside your central digital team, it really helps to define (and document) the expectations around different roles and any related activities for local channel and content owners / editors as part of any digital governance framework. Providing clarity:
In defining different roles, ideally these should include:
Making sure your content editors have the right knowledge and expertise to carry out their role is essential. This is likely to involve both the basics (e.g. how to use your CMS and any related tools, how to structure content, writing for the web, compliance requirements etc.) through to more specialist practices (e.g. what you need to do to resolve specific issues etc.).
There are multiple ways to support content owners through:
Bearing the importance of developing knowledge in mind, we developed the Sitemorse Academy, a series of bite-sized relevant “how to” videos that can be accessed at just the right point in time when a team member is required to address a specific issue identified by the Sitemorse platform. The combination of the instructional video and the actual experience of carrying out a fix (usually more than once) is a powerful way to embed knowledge.
It’s critical to keep your content owners engaged, so they feel motivated to keep carrying out their activities. Anybody who is unengaged and disinterested is simply not going to carry out the content management processes you ask them to.
Keeping team members engaged needs to ensure there is:
As far as we know, Sitemorse is the only digital quality and improve platform that takes engagement into account. We do this in four main ways:
If you really are herding cats with your wider content team then it’s time to take a different approach. Consider how you can provide clarity, develop knowledge and also engage your wider content community. This is not always straightforward, but you can make a real difference taking a structured and holistic view.
We’ve based Sitemorse on a model where the needs of your content team are carefully considered, and where people feel like part of the wider content team and less on the periphery. This is essential for making digital compliance and improvement achievable and sustainable.