Ease of Use. That has to be the most requested feature of an Enterprise CMS today. The user experience is critical not just to the customer viewing the website, but to the editors writing the content for it.
One U.K. CMS vendor has launched a new solution designed specifically to provide this feature. e-Spirit has announced FirstSpirit 4.1 -- a content management system designed with ease of use in mind.
Brought to the market in August of 2007, e-Spirit was then focused on delivering a robust architecture that was scalable. This latest version -- 4.1 -- has a renewed focus on the user and provides a number of new enhancements to make their work easier. FirstSpirit Interface
Features of FirstSpirit 4.1
Some of the new features of FirstSpirit 4.1 include:
* Look and Feel -- The Java Client for FirstSpirit has been completely overhauled with a new look and feel that emphasizes user friendliness. Changes include full text search, tabbing and icons to enable quicker creation of content. The old or "classic" interface is still available to editors who are use to it.
* Personalized Entry Page -- Each editor can have their own personalized entry page that shows quickstart bookmarks and outstanding tasks.
* New WebStart Interface -- The WebStart interface has also been updated for content creators.
* Inline tables in the DOM editor -- Prior versions required creating tables for content in a separate location. Now they can be created directly in the content themselves using the DOM editor.
* Media -- Improvements to media include restricting the size and formats that can be uploaded to the system for a particular project and a new graphics editor Personalized Entry Page
Build on a Open Standards Architecture
FirstSpirit is built on a open standards architecture of Java and XML. e-Spirit claims it can support thousands of editors simultaneously, more than 100,000 publications and over five million objects of managed media. The ECM is a client/server application that exists purely on the server. It's a different architecture model than many of the ECMs available today.
The ECM can be integrated with a number of portals, including SAP NetWeaver, IBM WebSphere and SharePoint.
Currently deployed in over 30 countries, FirstSpirit ECM is a multilingual CMS - and not just for the front-end. It appears the Administration interface is also multi-lingual.
In addition, FirstSpirit is not just for publishing content to websites, but is a multi-channel content management system which includes the ability to create quality print materials and mobile interfaces.
An ECM Vendor Who Listens
When you read through the product descriptions and the architecture, FirstSpirit sounds a little complicated to understand -- especially in terms of its architecture model. But it has been deployed in a number of verticals including government, aerospace and defense, and finance, so it must be doing something right.
At least the company was listening when they surveyed a number of U.K. web managers who claimed ease of use was very important.
Take a closer look at this ECM and let us know what you think.