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Content Management Software

Content management software is a necessity for most businesses.

Content Management Software is useful in helping individuals and businesses organize and publish their electronic and online information. [©Shutterstock, 2010]
©Shutterstock, 2010
Content Management Software is useful in helping individuals and businesses organize and publish their electronic and online information.

Content Management Software

Content management software is designed to help companies automate the process of data collection and distribution by storing and organizing Web and electronic content. According to Linux Journal, content management software was previously viewed as a luxury only available to those businesses that had the resources to purchase an out-of-the-box solution or build a custom content management software application. Today, it could easily be perceived as a necessity, because the distribution of business information is a key factor in a company's ability to compete in today's fast-paced business environment.

Content management software applications are designed to store and maintain large volumes of data. With content management software, employees can reuse data across various applications and distribute business information to customers and business partners outside the company. Content management software's core competency is that it manages content from development to publishing. While there are many benefits to using content management software, it is not a perfect system. According to the Intranet Journal, one of the greatest misconceptions about content management software is what the application can actually accomplish and at what cost to the company.

Contact Management Software Functionality

According to Blogged, well-designed content management software will function much as a computer program will. Individuals should be able to easily program the software with various rules to accomplish a range of business tasks. The goal is to have a centralized system that can be used to easily store, organize, update and retrieve data. By using content management software, employees can easily and quickly publish data without having to rely on information technology programmers. Individuals can set specific publishing rights and access parameters for a select group of employees.

there are three primary roles that will need to be filled when using content management software -- content authors, editors and publishers. The author writes the Web content, the editor is responsible for determining what to publish and where, and the publisher publishes the content on the website.

Necessary Content Management Software Features

A content management system should be user-friendly and its structure should complement the company's current information technology infrastructure. Ideally, content management software should also be menu-driven. This feature allows individuals to easily and efficiently add and link Web pages. Additionally, content management software should offer the benefit of reducing the time required for programmers to build custom content management forms. It's best if programmers are able to focus on redesigning the front end of the website, while the content management software manages the back-end content requirements. Other features that should be available through a content management system include reduction of website maintenance costs and time, improved content security, user-friendly tools for adding and managing content, multi-user options and security keys for managing user access rights, automated page indexing and linking and user-friendly options for importing content from other applications.

Tips on Evaluating Content Management Software

According to KnowledgeHills, individuals should first analyze the business cost of purchasing content management software. The questions listed below can help individuals determine if content management software is a wise investment for their company:

  • What is the risk of having outdated, incorrect data on the company website?
  • How much is the cost of insurance to cover this risk?
  • How does the business currently update or change content when the Webmaster is not available?
  • What are the costs of content not being readily available via the company website?

With a range of content management software vendors all claiming to have the most efficient, cost-effective content management tool, it can be difficult for individuals to choose the system that will best meet their business needs. Content management software comes in various shapes and sizes, platforms and programming languages -- all using different methods to manage business data. According to the Linux Journal, businesses should consider several criteria when evaluating content management software vendors including:

  • Software license. It is critical for businesses to check the software license, especially if there is intent to alter and redistribute the software.
  • Web accessibility and application platform. If the company has experience with a specific programming language or Web server, then it is recommended that the company choose content management software that uses the same components.
  • Stability, usability and scalability. It is important for individuals to list their needs and match those needs to the content management software they purchase.
  • Documentation and source code. Individuals should confirm that the content management software provides developer's manuals and coding guidelines.

According to Linux Journal, individuals who thoroughly evaluate the features of various content management software applications can enjoy the benefits of a stable, flexible and cost-effective application that is tailored to meet the unique needs of the company.

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