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By Eric Jones
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Man has it been crazy around my office. We are about to start a project which has to be completed in 30 days. This is design, development, Q&A, Training, and Live release. While this isn’t a problem for us, it does mean some wicked hours and work schedules for the next month.

The project is supposed to take about 2 – 3 months to complete but due to client “needs” we are really pushing the development envelope.

So why are we doing this? It’s simply because we can. This isn’t the normal way we like to do business but we have procedures in place, coding standards and a great team of people, so we know we can deliver for our client.

The other mitigating factor to our confidence is our in-house CMS which all our sites use / run on. Everyday I see the benefits of having these “tools” available to me and my shop, and everyday our customers do as well.

It’s because of our CMS that we can deliver what our customers need, in the time frame they need it. It’s also leading me to develop a new philosophy on CMS systems.

Many people cry because there are “too many” out there. We don’t need another CMS system. I say BAH! Bring it on! A design shop which has an in-house CMS or even an adopted 3rd party one, can be more productive in my opinion.

Our CMS has allowed us to take normal tasks, like building a contact form, to a super simple task. Most shops can probably design, test and deploy a customized contact script which emails and writes data to a DB in about 2 – 4 hours. Add in an administration script on top of that and it takes another 2 – 4 hours. A single developer can do the whole thing in about a day, maybe two (8 – 16 hours).

We can do it all in about 1 -2 hours thanks to our CMS and the tools we’ve developed.

So why am I telling you this? Why am I bragging? To motivate you to take a look at your company and your design team and find ways you can improve your flow and your development cycle.

Trust me a month of hard work on a few core tools could save you and your clients lots of time down the road.

We teamed up with SiteGround
To bring you the latest from the web and tried-and-true hosting, recommended for designers and developers. SitePoint Readers Get Up To 65% OFF Now
  • Smit

    I glad that you put this out there. I’m a budding “spare-time” developer working in other IT areas professionally. As I begin my endevors in programming (in general) sometimes I wonder if there is “value” in doing things like creating a personal “framework” on which I can build future projects for clients. This has convinced me that there is value, and that there can be work done while the client-base is still growing. Great blog entry!

  • Peter Tilbrook

    And there is also FarCry ( which is now open source.

  • M. Schopman

    I know what you mean. While you are using an inhouse build CMS system, also an commercial bought solution gives you those advantages.

    I have tried to push our CMS on the open source market, but Management doesn’t want to, so the last 8 months I have been busy building one ground up, based on the same principles but outside company ownership. Still alot of work todo though because I haven’t set the requirements on paper and in fact started building without documentation (yes that was a stupid move).

  • Cool, I have always had problems w/ 3rd party CMSs, bad GUI (or lack of one), non-standard coding practices, won’t support the kind of stuff I need. Maybe I’ll start working on my own custom CMS.

  • Rob…

    Yeah, our inhouse CMS is a god send. Can’t imagine building a site without it.

  • Paul

    Sounds like every other company I have ever worked for… “We need it now” equates to bust yer butt for many weeks only to be crapped upon later:)

  • jeffmace

    Is anyone willing to share a demo of their CMS. I am always looking for a good one and willing to pay. A reasonable amount that is..