Design & Technology April 07, 2017
How to Prevent A Content Editor Meltdown
The role of a content editor is a relatively straightforward one. By definition, a content editor’s role is to create, manage, and publish content across multiple sites and platforms.
Sounds simple enough. In theory – yes. In reality – not so much. In fact, sometimes, it’s more like this:
Logical workflow dictates that content editors are given sufficient information and content in an appropriate timeframe, that all content is complete and up to date and – most importantly – that there are enough resource and receptive feedback to enable the content editor to work effectively to a deadline.
However, this is, unfortunately, not the case. Often enough, content editors receive resources behind schedule, with information and content that is either delayed, incomplete or largely incorrect (or all three if you’re having an exceptionally bad day).
Content editors are also largely tasked with duties that often blur the lines between different roles. For example, being tasked with web development work that has to be completed yesterday. Or an urgent (yet minor) content task that requires the ability to utilize Photoshop to re-design posters and promotional content.
In order to avoid this and manage a smoother workflow process to execute projects in a seamless and sufficient manner, a number of key methods are required in order to keep your content editors happy and relatively sane.
The best, and by far the most important, way to keep processes smoother is communication. It seems like the obvious way to go forward when completing a project but, in reality, communicating within departments and teams is often forgotten or ignored during those hectic pre-deadline days.
Inform other teams when a project is planned to go ahead and when it should be completed. This way, resources should be provided in a timely manner, so that the content editor is not left waiting on content to execute when deadlines are fast approaching.
Content editors are often dealt tasks but, because of lack of communication between teams, are usually spending more time reassuring everyone that they are prioritizing the required task immediately, instead of actually being able to work on said task.
Keep it accurate!
Most often, content editors are delayed in working on tasks when resources are delayed or incorrect. Ensure all information and content is up-to-date, and that the resources are accurate and complete, as well as providing information and content as a collective resource. Otherwise, your content editor will be performing a tedious treasure hunt with no end in sight.
When deadlines are approaching it is, understandably, a very hectic and busy time; everything is to be completed at once and the content editor is often given content at the last minute. To avoid this, provide resources at the earliest convenience so that the content editor can implement the required task with enough time for possible changes or updates. This will also ensure that risks of technology failure are mitigated, and the content editor eludes the usual backlog that suddenly arises when attempting to publish tasks.
Don’t be too harsh!
The upshot of all this is, don’t be too harsh on your internal content teams. Understandably, most processes vary and strict structures don’t necessarily apply in all situations and environments. However, bearing the above in mind is a sure-fire way to ensure your content editors’ workflow is infinitely smoother and produces minimal tears.