CMS Report version 10 is released

CMS Watch recently released the 10th edition of the CMS Report.

It provides a comprehensive overview of Web Content Management products and best practices, including updated, 8- to 18-page comparative surveys of 29 Web CMS packages (22 in the Standard Edition), as well as short descriptions of 15 other products across 7 vendor categories. A special European Edition covers major vendors in that region as well as international players.

I think, the report would be useful to all the stakeholders for CMS projects. The major sections in the report cover:

  • Tips on creating a business case for web content management systems. This is usually a difficult part because calculating ROI etc for a CMS implementation is tricky.
  • A section on what CMS is? Very useful if you want to understand the CMS lifecycle and key features. There’s a section on the CMS landscape that’ll help you understand the differences and similarities between related technologies – DM, DAM, KM, ECM etc.
  • The main part that has detailed and exhaustive comparisons of many products in the market. It categorizes products by tiers (Enterprise, Upper tier, Open Source etc) and their lifecycle focus (Production oriented, delivery oriented and full cycle packages). There is a matrix that helps you pick up a shortlist based on these categories. For example, if you want an Enterprise Tier product that is production oriented, your choices are FileNet, Vignette, Documentum and Open Text. I’ll differ on some of the categorization but then it does give an excellent starting point to have your shortlist. The reviews are really exhaustive and when combined with charts and screen shots, they are very helpful in comparing products.
  • An excellent section on trends and best practices. This will help you in learning from others’ mistakes and making your projects successful

Overall it does a very good job of reviewing and comparing CMSs. Unlike some other analysts’ waves and quadrants, it does not give the “best” CMS because that obviously depends on your needs. I have a suggestion for the authors though – How about including a tool in the next edition, that helps one rate and come up with a recommendation based on specific requirements. An excel based tool with all the criteria in first column, weight in second column, description of how each criteria is implemented in that product and a score in the next column will give a ranking based on individual needs.
And I’m hoping the next edition will cover the Asian market as well 🙂

More information about the report.

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One thought on “CMS Report version 10 is released

  1. Thanks for your nice comments. I’m glad you like the report.

    I would say though, that we’ve tried to help buyers develop a short-list or recommendation, with the new introduction of scenarios, where we’ve graded each system according to how well they fit.

    This means that buyers should be able to identify their projects with the scenarios and based on that narrow down the list of vendors.

    In the early chapters of the report, there is a few pages on the actual selection process. One of the things I would argue is that the type of Excel based tool that you mention, adds very little value to the selection process. In particular I’m very critical of the weight and in general feel that much precious time is wasted discussion the ratings in Excel spreadsheets.

    There are better and more efficient ways at arriving at the “best” CMS. If you could narrow it down to 2 – 3 vendors, I would strongly encourage buyers to do a prototype to learn more and educate themselves on the product.

    James Robertson has some good free articles on this. A good place to start is http://www.steptwo.com.au/papers/kmc_evaluate/

    Cheers, Janus

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