Web Content Strategy: Governance and Conclusion

Web Content Strategy: Governance and Conclusion

By: Daniel Jeffers - Web Content Strategy - 2014

Governance is closely related, but not quite the same thing as workflow—last week’s topic. According to Wikipedia:

Website governance is an organization's structure of staff and the technical systems, policies and procedures to maintain and manage a website.

The best breakdown I’ve seen comes from Candi Harrison, who worked on the Federal Web Manager’s Council. In a blog post, she describes governance as consisting of the five R’s.

I think of it in terms of the 5 “R’s" of governance: Roles, Responsibilities, Relationships, Rules, and Review.

Though her post is written primarily for federal agency website managers; the principles scale to pretty much any project.

Roles: Someone needs to be in charge—and have the authority to match the importance of the website to the organization. Some organizations may use a pyramid structure, others may use a star-shaped, or consensus based approach. But all the roles related to web content need to be defined and made part (or all) of someone’s job description.

Responsibilities:what are the tasks and results that each role will be held accountable for?

Relationships: for each role, there are a number of people that person needs to interact with in order to fulfill her responsibilities. Who are these people? This should be mapped out and made clear.

Rules: Rules can come from many places. The organization may have rules for use of logos, colors, terminology. They may license branding or elements from some other entity, and are then bound by those rules as well. If they interact with federal agencies, they may need to observe some of the rule-sets binding these groups as well.

Review: An ongoing review of how well the people in each role fulfill their responsibilities. This is important to maintain the quality of the content, to ensure goals are actually being met, and to constantly look for things that can be significantly improved.

This concludes our seven-part series on web content strategy. A quick overview can be found to the right. Next week we will likely start looking at some analytics—though that might change.