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Posted about 19 hours ago
Palantir.net's Guide to Digital Governance: An Introduction and Starting at the 10,000ft View Palantir.net's Guide to Digital Governance brandt Fri, 09/30/2016 - 08:54 Scott DiPerna Sep 29, 2016 Palantir.net’s Guide to ... [More] Digital Governance is intended to help get you started when developing a governance plan for your institution’s digital communications. In this post we will cover... What is governance? Topics you should consider when developing a governance plan for your digital communications Where to begin We want to make your project a success. Let's Chat. Introduction In this age of information, digital communications are perhaps the most vital form of outreach an organization has for presenting itself to the world. Today it is probably more likely that a person’s first experience or interaction with your organization will occur through the internet. It is then no wonder that most institutions feel they must have a website or they have to be on Facebook and Twitter. These are now the places where reputations are built and managed. There are no shortages of services and materials for building a digital presence, whether it is on the web or a social network; however there is less focus on how these presences will be managed and maintained after they are built. This is the all-important and too-often neglected role of digital governance, otherwise known as the ownership, management, and sustainability plan for an organization’s various digital communications platforms. Governance seems simple at a distance – it is the set of rules an organization will follow for its digital communications – but the devil is in the detail, and the details are precisely where the process of defining a governance plan becomes prickly. The details are also where many will become bogged down, lose momentum, and set the plans aside, never to be addressed again until a problem arises. To help get you started developing a governance plan for your institution’s digital communications, I have put together a guide that outlines many of the questions you will want to answer in thinking through policies and guidelines in your governance plan. The format is literally a series of questions you can answer that will help you begin to consider key issues in digital governance and how you want to handle them. The guide is based largely on work I have done in higher education, but I have generalized here for broad use across industries. The guide has sixteen sections that follow a specific order intended to help you start at a high-level of thinking about your digital communications, properties and assets, and then focus on greater and greater levels of detail. The sections are as follows: Starting at the 10,000ft View – Define the digital ecosystem your governance planning will encompass. Properties and Platforms – Define all the sites, applications and tools that live in your digital ecosystem. Ownership – Consider who ultimately owns and is responsible for each site, application and tool. Intended Use – Establish the fundamental purpose for the use of each site, application and tool. Roles and Permissions – Define who should be able to do what in each system. Content – Understand how ownership and permissions should apply to content. Organization – Establish how the content in your digital properties should be organized and structured. URLs – Define how URL patterns should be structured in your websites. Design – Determine who owns and is responsible for the many aspects design plays in digital communications and properties. Personal Websites – Consider the relationship your organization should have with personal websites of members of your organization. Private Websites, Intranets and Portals – Determine the policies that should govern site which are not available to the public. Web-Based Applications – Consider use and ownership of web-based tools and applications. E-Commerce – Determine the role of e-commerce in your website. Broadcast Email – Establish guidelines for the use of broadcast email to constituents and customers. Social Media – Set standards for the establishment and use of social media tools within the organization. Digital Communications Governance – Keep the guidelines you create updated and relevant. Starting at the 10,000ft View When I first begin to think about digital governance for any organization, I like to back up as far as I can to see everything I should include in my planning, or what people sometimes call the 10,000ft view. Digital communications can encompass many different things, from websites to social networks to broadcast email, so I suggest backing up to the point where you are looking at the various platforms that will be part of your planning. Here is a list of some common platforms encompassed in a digital communications strategy: Public Websites Private Websites Intranets & Portals Web-Based Applications E-Commerce Social Networks Digital Media Broadcast Email Digital Communications Governance*  This list contains the common “properties” or platforms on which a digital communications strategy is built, or at the very least they are some basic categories for the grouping of such properties. For instance, your organization may have a main website with many sub-sites or microsites. Others may be combined in your institution; for example, all of your web-based applications may be built within your Intranet site. Make your own list align with the properties you need to include in your governance plan. These will be your top level categories. * Few among us would likely think to include “Digital Communications Governance” on this list, but I do so precisely for that reason, and because I want to reinforce that Governance (its documents, people, and processes) is a living thing that needs to be maintained over time, just like the rest of the list. It’s oddly self-referential to think about governance for Governance, but think of it like the part of the Constitution that describes how to amend the Constitution. This is the first post in our new series, Palantir's Guide to Digital Governance. Check back on our blog every Monday for the next step in developing your digital governance plan. Stay connected with the latest news on web strategy, design, and development. Sign up for our newsletter. Content Strategy Strategy [Less]
Posted about 23 hours ago
In a recent article on OS Training, Steve Burge asks Why Are There So Few Drupal 8 Themes? It’s true that the number of themes out there is pretty low, and Steve's article considers some possible reasons for that, mainly relating to the supply side ... [More] of the market. I'd prefer to focus on the demand side in answering that question. My observations should be prefaced by the caveat that I’m probably not a typical "site builder”, whatever that means. I’m a senior software engineer, working at a big systems integrator, building websites for large organisations. But I've built sites for myself, and for friends, and I used to work at a small digital agency, and after nearly 8 years on drupal.org, I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve used a contributed theme on a site I've built, excluding Zen or one of the other base themes. The obvious comparison to make is with Wordpress, which has far more themes available, not least because they maintain backwards compatibility. While the Wordpress community may be our twin island, the Drupal community is in a different place. Even though I built a site to showcase Drupal themes, I just don't have an interest in contributed themes these days, and I don't think I'm alone in that - as I see it, Drupal site builds generally fall into one of three categories: Organisations paying someone else to build a site for them Drupal is complex enough that the people and organisations who work with it aren't at the bottom end of the market. If you’re spending more than a couple of hundred pounds on your website, you probably want it to look different from other sites, and you probably have a budget for a designer. Technically minded people who are building their own sites I don’t want to further the stereotype of techies having no design sense, but for a lot of people in this category, Bartik is good enough, in the same way that Bootstrap is good enough for some startups. It’s all about the content, and it doesn't really matter to the site owner if it looks the same as other sites. For some people, that might even be considered a good thing. If they do care about design, then (like me) they probably want to design their own site anyway. Community groups without much money to spend This is probably the main target market for contributed themes. They want the site to look nice, and to look different, but they don’t want to spend money on it. When even the maintainer of one of the main core themes is promoting a premium theme, it seems clear that there is a demand for a premium themes market. How that will work is another question. Tags:  Drupal Drupal 8 open source All tags [Less]
Posted 1 day ago
Customers are the heart of a business. As a business owner interacting directly with customers, or as a digital marketer for a business, you need to: Track prospects and customers to provide individualized services. Manage leads to find the high ... [More] quality ones and improve revenue. Engage with customers—the right tools can give you specific information about customers and their transactions. Integrate social media with the business for better marketing and customer relationships. Automate and optimize the end-to-end sales process. The objectives mentioned above require a well thought out Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategy. A CRM application seamlessly integrated with the business/CMS website can help in achieving this, leading the company to better customer retention and higher profitability. Drupal allows custom integration with any type of third-party API. Drupal 8 has a revamped web services module which makes it even easier to integrate with third-party applications. Here are some CRM applications that Drupal can work with: Webform CiviCRMCiviCRM is a web-based contact relationship management application built in PHP. It integrates well with Drupal. It works seamlessly for functions like synchronization between Drupal roles and CiviCRM memberships, rules and triggers, Ubercart, views and web forms. It is a good tool for managing online subscriptions and contacts. Drupal modules can also be built to make use of direct CiviCRM. Too many security updates, poor online documentation and lack of all CRM features are some drawbacks of CiviCRM. RedHen CRMThe best part about RedHen CRM is that its high level design is similar to Drupal Commerce, and therefore it uses Drupal capabilities well. It is a lightweight CRM application that has features like contact management, engagement tracking, customisable forms for input, etc. It is highly customisable, making it advantageous for businesses with very specific requirements. However, the frequency of software updates is very low. Salesforce SuiteSalesforce.com is a popular cloud-based CRM application. It automates the end-to-end sales process. Drupal has a module called Salesforce Suite. This module enables integration between Drupal entities and Salesforce data objects, allowing data exchange between Drupal-based applications and Salesforce. You can create object mapping and extend the APIs to create functionality for customised business workflows. But the options available depend on the license you have. Salesforce is better suited for big businesses. Other CRM applications that Drupal works well with include: CRM Core is a platform within Drupal which can be used to track contacts, relationships and activities. It allows reporting and bulk operations, like sending emails to customers and merging contacts. OpenCRM is a native Drupal CRM solution that has tools such as entities, rules, fields, etc, that can be used to build a CRM system as per client requirements. SugarCRM is a highly customizable CRM solution that can integrate with Drupal to provide integration via web form integration and data synchronization. A Drupal-based CRM product is a good choice as it can be customised for specific requirements. On the other hand, CRM products like Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics are more comprehensive but might need more work when it comes to customisation. Srijan has experience and expertise in projects involving integration of Drupal with CRM applications. These projects have its helped clients build a reliable CRM strategy. [Less]
Posted 1 day ago
A day at DrupalCon with Urs ..... aaaand it’s a wrap (almost)! Urs Bucher Fri, 09/30/2016 - 09:23 Today was the last day of this years’ DrupalCon in Europe (well, almost - there’s some serious ... [More] sprinting going on Friday and Saturday still). We finished the con off with still a lot of talking to old and new friends on and off our booth, not one, but two sessions and an onstage surprise gig by @dasjo at the closing session when the location of next years’ European DrupalCon was revealed. I don’t know why, but this reminds me of Vienna anyway... On the fun side, we had a rather prominent visitor coming by our booth and playing, aahm, testing our HoloLens. Which clearly proves that boys will always be boys; won’t they? Once the visitors were gone we cleaned up our booth and donated our booth furniture to the lovely people at Oxfam Ireland. We’re not only talking about giving back to communities, we’re just doing it! So, that’s almost all, but stay tuned, we've got one last blog post from the Friday sprint comin`. [Less]
Posted 1 day ago
For those who are thinking about developing with Drupal 8 in the future, we started a blog series in which we give some helpful tips and talk about our experiences with the latest version of the CMS. In the third and last part of the series we introduce four useful tools which will help developers to save time and avoid common mistakes.
Posted 1 day ago
The Tech Talks at Acquia Engage have always been among the most popular sessions, so I’m excited to announce that for Acquia’s upcoming Engage 2016 conference (Nov 1-3 in Boston) we’ve more than doubled the number of Tech Talks. Tags:  acquia drupal planet
Posted 1 day ago
Back in January this year, we talked about Drupal 8 themes. At that time, there were 86 themes for Drupal 8 on Drupal.org. 9 months later? There are only 133 themes for Drupal 8. In the whole of 2016, we've added only 47 themes for Drupal 8.
Posted 1 day ago
Drupal RTL in the real world mira Thu, 09/29/2016 - 12:30
Posted 1 day ago
Drupal 8 represents a major shift away from “Drupalisms” to mainstream object-orientated PHP. Experienced developers who are used to other frameworks like Symfony, should find it much easier to pick up Drupal now than they would have in Drupal 7 and ... [More] previous versions. But this shift presents challenges for those of who are used to the Drupal 7 way of doing things and aren’t necessarily up to speed with all the new PHP best practices. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing tutorials on some of the key concepts you need to understand in order to master Drupal 8 module development. This week, we are going to look at namespaces. [Less]
Posted 2 days ago