Do you need a content management system (CMS) for your school or district Web site? Absolutely. In a world where Plone, Drupal, Mambo, and many other free and open source solutions exist, you would need to convince me that you shouldn’t use a CMS. It’s clear to me that individually maintained Web pages just don’t cut it anymore. By utilizing a CMS you can:
- distribute management of Web content to the persons and groups that are most responsible for it
- instantly improve your site’s design by utilizing one of the many templates that are typically provided with the CMS software
- gain immediate improvement in your site’s accessibility, usability, and standards compliance
- make your site searchable
- easily add blogging, wiki, and many other interesting features that will encourage collaboration (instant RSS!)
- improve access to information for everyone in your community
Adopting a CMS can be a daunting process. Do yourself a favor and check out the CMS Matrix and OpensourceCMS Web sites. They provide side-by-side comparisons of all of the most popular solutions and will help you get a sense of the scope of features that a CMS provides.
Anyone have any feedback on a particular solution that they’ve used? Post about your experiences (good or bad) and recommendations in the comments.