Do you work with other people creating content for WordPress websites? Managing an editorial staff of any size was harder and more expensive than it needed to be before the Edit Flow plugin came along. Edit Flow helps you assign, schedule, collaborate, and approve content easily–right within WordPress.
Life before Edit Flow
- Develop topics and plan proposed story budget, perhaps with the help of WordPress Editorial Calendar plugin. Each topic has a DRAFT Post sitting in WordPress.
- Share the budget and assignments with others via email.
- Go back and forth in email with multiple writers and SEO folks over multiple assignments to clarify story requirements. Occasionally stop to put your head back on straight.
- Go back and forth again in email with writers collaborating on edits, perhaps with the help of the Integrated Content Editor plugin. By the end of the day, it’s impossible to put your head back on straight. You think you emailed everyone your edits, but you’re not really sure. You try to correlate email threads with the state of individual DRAFT Posts, but the phone won’t stop ringing and your kid’s softball game starts in 20 minutes.
- Finally publish submitted posts. Some did not get all the edits you wanted because either you or the writers dropped the email ball and mis-communicated.
Life after Edit Flow
- Develop topics and plan proposed story budget with the help of Edit Flow’s “Calendar” and “Story Budget” modules. Everything forthcoming is easy to understand in one place.
- Add story requirements to assignments using Edit Flow’s “Editorial Metadata.”
- Share the budget and assignments with others right in WordPress.
- Receive notifications when any Posts are updated, using Edit Flow’s “Notifications” module.
- Respond by leaving edits on Posts using Edit Flow’s threaded “Editorial Comments” attached to each post, only viewable in the backend.
NOTE: You can still use the ICE Plugin for track-changes style functionality.
- Understand the status of any Post with the help of Edit Flow’s “Custom Status” module.
- Finally, check the story budget to make sure the correct Posts are finished and scheduled for WordPress to publish.
All Edit Flow really does is provide ways for you to add important additional information about your posts, then provide easy ways to alert staff of status and changes. Implementation is elegant, flexible, and professionally coded.
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Modules of Edit Flow
- Calendar – Easily see when content was and will be posted, in calendar format.
- Custom Statuses – Add workflow states that work for your team to understand where posts are in the process..
- Editorial Comments – Backend-only threaded comments, attached to posts, for back-and-forth between editors and writers.
- Editorial Metadata – Clearly assign requirements to post assignments from the beginning, such as photo requirements, minimum word count–anything.
- Notifications – Writers and Editors receive notifications any time a post is updated or has new Editorial Comments added.
- Story Budget – Similar to the Calendar, displaying upcoming posts at a glance, with an easily-printable view. Great planning tool.
- User Groups – Set up groups specifically for production management, optionally sending Notifications to groups instead of individuals. Great for “Who can do this?”
Who makes Edit Flow?
The Edit Flow project is lead by 3 WordPress heavies–at least 1 of whom works for Automattic.
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A final word and excellent support
Edit Flow helps solve a complex problem (timely management of collaborative content,) yet is simply done. That said, there’s always room for trouble. As I researched this article and tried to install the latest version of Edit Flow, the plugin failed upon activation. I sent a support note along with the PHP error to the support forum, and the plugin was patched within 30 minutes. It’s safe to say that for the time being you won’t be left out in the cold with Edit Flow.
You can pick up the plugin here.