Accept that you need an implementation partner (and choose the right one)
Few, if any businesses possess the internal expertise, resources, or objectivity required to implement their own CMS.
You need someone with the right experience—not just with your chosen CMS platform, but also in working with organizations and industries facing challenges similar to yours.
The right implementation partner will both continually drive best practices and have the foresight to identify pitfalls as well as avoid them.
Avoiding the late U-turn
The right content team will drive advocacy for the new CMS across the business. However, you also need to maintain good visibility among senior stakeholders.
Senior leaders should have the opportunity to raise issues and correct problems as soon as possible, to avoid late U-turns, or worse, starting the implementation from scratch.
Last-minute changes aren’t just demoralizing—they’re enormously expensive and significantly delay time to value.
Build in quick wins
Maintaining senior advocacy throughout the first year of your CMS implementation can be hard without any immediate results to show for your work.
It can help offset any vision fatigue by building in some modest, short-term goals (like pilot projects) into your implementation strategy.
Uncover and mitigate risks
While building in quick wins is important, don’t let the drive for early success overshadow the need for diligent risk identification and mitigation.
Don’t wait for problems to appear. Instead, proactively uncover them by doing things like:
- Piloting aspects of the editorial user’s experience
- Conducting interviews and gathering early feedback on functionality
- Doing something start to finish, like publishing a blog from first draft through to multichannel distribution
Plan your content migration meticulously
Before moving anything, it’s a good idea to audit your existing content. Moving old, unused content into your new CMS effectively builds in inefficiencies before it’s even launched.
Once you know what you’re taking with you—and what you’re leaving behind— think about how the migration itself will happen. Moving content from one place to another is messy—issues around missing data, varying formats, and conflicting versions are common.
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