Web Project Template Files: Project Definition and Start Up Authors: Sonia Kay, Econsultancy and other expert contributors Title: Content Plan
About this Guide
Some site content will be created new, some content will be re-purposed for the web and other content may be syndicated or taken directly into the site as a content feed from a third party supplier.
The content plan details who will be providing the content described in the functional specification. It makes clear who owns the content and any sign off processes behind the supply of content, what format they should provide the content in, who they should provide the content to, how often they will update the content and to what deadlines.
The Content Plan template is provided in Excel and should be used to audit the content and then produce a critical path of what content you need by which date in order to launch the site on time and then ensure content is kept up to date. Late delivery of content will almost certainly have an associated cost/impact on launch/release dates. It is important to keep all content providers aware of their deadlines and responsibilities and the content plan will allow the project manager to track this. The page IDs in the content plan correlate to the site map.
Note: the Content Plan should form a Schedule to the Contract (see Section 3.1). As late, or unfit, content is the main cause for web project delays, agencies are well advised to have their clients, or partners, commit to delivering the agreed content according to such a plan and including this in the contract. Not only does this help protect the agency against content-related delays but there’s nothing like a contract to focus the mind of an unruly content provider… If they do not want to commit to delivering the content as set out in a contract then you must wonder why not? Should the content even be there at all if no-one is prepared to commit to delivering and maintaining it properly?