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Frequently Asked Questions about the CMS

  • Have a question about the CMS? You're not alone. Here are the answers to the questions we get asked most frequently.

    What is a CMS?

    CMS stands for Content Management System. In brief, a website run by a CMS separates the content (the words and pictures) from the look and feel of the site. When you are using a CMS, you don't have to worry about page layout, colors, fonts, etc.—the CMS takes care of that for you. That gives us a more consistent, easy-to-navigate site and gives you the freedom to concentrate on your own content.

    Who should serve as the content author(s) for my unit’s site?

    A content author is a person who enters information into a unit's website. Please don't be confused by the term “author.” In this case, it does not necessarily mean that the person writes the content. Any authorized person or people in your unit can pen content for your website. They can even type it into a word-processing file that can be transferred to the web database by another person-the content author.

    While the Ektron web-creation tool is more user friendly than many, it is not necessarily easy to use. Learning and mastering Ektron is a time-consuming process. And because websites are a growing source of information, your unit's website needs to be kept up to date. The content author who will have the most success is the one who uses the system frequently. It is a commitment.

    When deciding who in your unit should serve as the content author(s), consider someone who fits the following description:

    • Is in the office frequently and has access to the Internet
    • Knows what's going on in the department, office, etc. (Your unit's website should contain news and events as well as information about programs and services.)
    • Is capable, somewhat technically savvy, and a good learner
    • Has the time to devote to learning the system and updating the website daily, weekly, or monthly, as needed
    • Ideally, can serve in the role long-term

    Who should serve as the content approver(s) for my unit’s site?

    The content approver, as the name suggests, is the person who approves content for your unit's website. The content approver is the second person in Ektron's approval chain, called workflow. After the content author enters the information, he or she submits it to the content approver. The approver reviews the submitted content for accuracy, clarity, appropriateness, etc. He or she may reject the content and send it back to the author to adjust and resubmit, approve the content as is, or edit and approve the content. After the content approver approves the content, he or she submits it to the web editor for publishing.

    Because the content approver is the final person from the unit to review and authorize the content, a logical choice for the role is the head of a department, office, program, or other unit, or a person that unit head designates.

    It is expected that some units will designate the same person as author and approver.

    How do I register for training?

    You can register for web maintainer training by visiting the Web Team's Web Training website. Three different workshops are currently offered: Basic training, which all web maintainers should take; Intermediate training, a follow-up for those who maintain unconverted websites; and Intermediate Pages and Layouts training, the follow-up to Basic for those whose websites have been converted to the new, responsive design.

    Do I need to go through training?

    Training is designed to help you get started and feel comfortable using the Ektron software and content management system. It also provides direct contact with members of the Web Team who are familiar with the product.

    However, you are welcome to forgo training. The Web Team has elaborate how-to documentation on creating and editing content, and submitting content for publishing on the live site.