How do you decide between Git or a CCMS (Component Content Management System)? It is possible to run a DITA solution from source control systems, but research clearly shows that in order to reap the full benefit of DITA organizations should deploy a CCMS. Not only does this increase the efficiency of the Authors but it should also reduce the time to reach a full return on investment.

The needs of a modern Tech Pubs team

What is needed by a modern Tech Pubs Team working in DITA? Whatever your industry, if you are working in DITA there are common requirements:

  • A way to create content – Your authoring platform, Adobe FrameMaker, oXygen Author, XMetaL, SimplyXML etc.
  • The need to Store, version, and share many component-based, structured (DITA) files. This can be addressed by an open source system platform such as Git or a commercial CCMS (Component Content Management System) such as Bluestream XDocs DITA CCMS.
  • The ability to branch, merge and release content.
  • The ability to manage the localization process
    • Send files for translation
    • Receive translated content
  • The need to publish your content. This will start with the DITA Open Toolkit but may also include other components such as Antenna House, Miramo, oXygen PDF Chemistry etc.

Looked at simply, or if your needs are simple, then a CCMS may not be necessary and Git might be the answer. If your needs are complex then a CCMS will prove to be the better approach.

Why Git might work

A lot of companies have chosen Git instead of a commercial CCMS. This is because Git has some good properties:

  • Git is good at storing, versioning, and sharing files.
  • It allows authors to benefit from collaborating with teams already accustomed to Git.
  • Git has a collaborative model.
  • Git also has a lower cost to entry; however, “open-source” does not mean “free”. There is still the need to invest in: hard resources, infrastructure, and knowledge.
  • Git is a culture fit – why buy if I can build?, this is particularly true with some software companies.
  • If you are already using Git in-house.
  • You are using oXygen as your XML IDE (integrated development environment) and you know how to squeeze every last bit from its capabilities.
  • You understand the steep change management curve and embrace it.
  • A solution based on Git still requires additional components. Many of the components will be out-of-the-box features in a CCMS.

Why a CCMS

Designed for the job at hand

Git has been designed as a source control system, it does this very well, but it has not been conceived to be a DITA Component Content Management System from the ground up. A CCMS will handle search, manage metadata, localization, collaboration, workflows and much more.

Why XDocs CCMS

Fully scalable, XDocs can adjust to any number of system users to accommodate growth in your company. Installations range from 2 users to 2,000+ users.

XDocs is easy-to-learn; Bluestream’s development philosophy is to work with open standards and build components that our clients can configure themselves as and when required. We can of course carry out this work for you, but unlike some competitors, we don’t hold our customers hostage.

  • A modular, so you can purchase the components that you need now and add more components at any time.
  • XDocs can be deployed in a way that suits you; SaaS, on-premise, or fully hosted by Bluestream.
  • Fast to deploy, the modular approach allows for rapid system set up enabling installation in hours rather than days.
  • XDocs can store and manage any binary files, bringing new levels of control to other document and media types.
  • XDocs has unprecedented integration with the market leading XML editors.
  • Collaborative working with browser-based tools for SME (Subject Matter Expert) contribution.
  • Greater control can be achieved by the addition of optional workflow.
  • XDocs APIs open-up the ability to integrate other systems with the content creation lifecycle for example: PLM and ERP.
  • Publish your content as never before, directly from the CCMS with Bluestream’s own Dynamic Delivery Platform. Create self-service customer portals and push the latest technical content into 3rd party systems such as Salesforce and Zendesk.
  • XDocs is customizable. While the CCMS is fully-functional and feature-rich right out-of-the-box, there is no limit to what you can achieve.

Bluestream’s dedicated team of support staff can guide you through the entire adoption process, calling on years of experience gained across every market sector.

More information

Read more about Git or a CCMS in our Whitepaper: How do you decide between Git or a Component Content Management System?

A recording of the ‘Git Happens’ webinar co-hosted with Ryffine can be found here