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Ideagen content migration - GraphCMS

Ideagen content migration - GraphCMS

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Ideagen provides quality, audit and risk software to some of the most heavily regulated industries in the world. From healthcare and finance to aviation and environmental health & safety, their software helps businesses stay safe and compliant.

The Product team was keen to modernise their CMS to support the editorial and marketing roadmaps. They felt their incumbent platform was outdated and no longer fit for purpose. It was also key to begin future-proofing their content as new digital platforms continue to emerge.

Whilst Ideagen has an in-house development team, they lacked the time and capacity to plan the migration in a strategic way, so they got in touch with Digital Detox.

The brief

Chrissi Jackson, head of QHSE products at Ideagen, explains: “We needed a partner to help with the tech side of the migration. I had an initial chat with Donovan, the CEO at Digital Detox, and immediately felt that our project would be in safe hands. I also liked the company’s ethos of sustainability and felt we shared a lot of the same core principles”.

The Ideagen and DD teams worked together to agree on a scope of work that felt ambitious, but achievable. They started with a few Discovery sessions to understand the background, goals, existing landscape and key measures of success.

Because Ideagen were keen on a scalable and future-proofed solution, the teams agreed that a headless CMS was the obvious choice. They opted for GraphCMS, an API-first headless CMS platform.

What’s a headless CMS?

A headless CMS is a content repository that can be integrated with any 3rd party digital platform. It’s possible to build a content API in a matter of minutes and push content out to any front-end presentation layer.

More and more of our clients are opting for a headless CMS because it’s the most flexible, scalable and low-risk content solution for businesses.

There’s still a degree of manual labour involved in the planning stage, but it’s possible to automate a lot of the publishing process. In fact, content can usually be published across multiple platforms in a single click.

The process

The Ideagen team was more focused on getting the migration right than achieving a fixed deadline. This is always a sensible approach for a big content migration. Too many companies put their efforts into completing the migration by a certain date, but this means they have to cut corners or place their teams under unnecessary pressure.

It’s far better to have a plan that’s based on milestones and a shared agreement of the end goal. In this case, it was also important to make sure that only necessary content sections were migrated - there was no room for wasted effort!

An extension of the Ideagen team

Chrissi says that one of the aspects she liked most about working with Digital Detox is that we felt like an extension of their team.

She says: “The DD team also handled the relationship with GraphCMS, which was very helpful. It meant we could focus on getting the planning right, and they could work out the best technical solution.

As the project evolved, we realised that our existing content structure was a lot more complex than it seemed. The DD team remained calm, professional and positive throughout, even when hurdles appeared. Everything felt like a collaborative conversation, rather than negotiation”.

Collaboration is key

From a Digital Detox perspective, we adored working with the Ideagen team. They were open-minded, pragmatic and thoroughly engaged throughout the process - and this made all the difference to the outcome.

Jess Clarke, Senior Project Manager at Digital Detox, explains: “This was the most collaborative project I’ve ever worked on with a client. It felt like a genuine partnership - we planned together, solved problems together and pivoted together when necessary.

The Ideagen team made themselves available so we could get quick answers and overcome issues straight away. This helped maintain momentum and contributed to the project’s success.”

Keeping in touch

An important aspect of the project was setting and meeting the expectations of the Ideagen team.

We involved the team in all the relevant parts of the project, such as:

  • Daily stand-ups
  • Sprint planning
  • Backlog grooming
  • Update meetings
  • Demos and showcases
  • Knowledge sharing on Confluence

It might seem unusual to some folks that we involve our clients so deeply in the Discovery process. We believe it’s a vital step to fuelling collaboration and getting the best end result.

It also helps cement our relationship as an extension of the client’s team, rather than a one-dimensional service provider.

Knowledge is power

A really unique, but powerful, aspect of this project is the way that knowledge was shared between DD and Ideagen.

A member of the Ideagen team took responsibility for writing up notes about every aspect of the process, so everyone understood what we’d done, why, and the outcome. Often, people may shy away from documentation in an agile process. But, when it’s used correctly, alongside agile development, documentation can be invaluable.

We used Confluence as a knowledge-sharing repository for the project. Frankly, we were blown away with the volume and quality of the documentation shared, and would recommend this level of detailed documentation to other clients. It was also a great way to de-risk the process, as anyone could get up to speed quickly and pick up on next steps if someone was unavailable at any stage.

The end result

At the end of the project, the Ideagen team had a clear content migration plan, backed by technical feasibility. We feel we’ve done our job well when we’re able to hand over the plan to the client’s development team, with complete confidence that they can execute it. Though we’re always on hand to answer any questions or help solve any challenges that might crop up at the implementation stage.

It was a dream to work with Ideagen on this interesting and challenging project. We do hope to work with them again in the future!

About Digital Detox

Take a look at our Services page to find out more about what we do for clients. Whether you need a bit of extra support for your in-house team or a complete, full stack design and development project, we can help!

Get in touch to discuss your next project.