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on 8 July 2003
In "Managing Enterprise Content: A Unified Content Strategy," Ann Rockley explains a very complex subject in refreshingly human terms. Like a physician, she believes that pain is information. Acute problems in your content management and authoring processes cause pain. "Deadlines are missed, content is inconsistent, content is missing ... and customers complain." Rockley helps you systematically identify "where it hurts," then walks you through the recovery process. This process leads you to a unified content strategy, which ensures that "information is created, managed, and delivered consistently, in the way that users need it, without duplicating your efforts."
Rockley succeeds in making a very complex subject appear simple. She clearly commands her material. Despite the encyclopedic level of detail found in the book, it is obvious that Rockley is not reaching for information. Rather than pointing to abstract paradigms from a safe distance, she matter-of-factly breaks them into bite-sized scenarios that can easily be understood by readers new to the subject. Rockley drives each point home with concrete example and case studies from the real world. Many readers will recognize their own companies and departments in her examples. Rockley does not present a "one size fits all" content strategy. Instead, she shows you how to ask and answer the right questions for your organization. And she provides straightforward checklists that make it easy for you to implement each step of the process. In so doing, she presents you with a flexible and scalable framework you can use to solve your own problems.
Before you spend a lot of money on content management systems or consulting fees, buy this book. Rockley provides you with the kind of expert consulting that results from decades of experience, and normally comes at a very high price. In effect, she gives away the store.
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