I had the opportunity to sit down with the Network Administrator of my company and chat a little about the WordPress site that we currently have.
His name is Jason Meister, and he is in charge of maintaining and updating the site on a regular basis. Those updates not only cover the necessary WordPress updates, but also updates to the content and layout as well. Keeping it inline with the company’s focus and target market.
Although WordPress is not his core function at the company, he has to insure the site maintains a professional look and feel and works well with everything else we have in the company.
Robb: Jason, thank you for meeting with me. I would like to start by asking what is it about WordPress that you like the most?
Jason: It is super easy to make changes to the content on a regular basis, and you don’t need to be a web developer to do it.
Robb: If you could pick any CMS out there to use for our website, would you still pick WordPress knowing what you do about it now?
Jason: In a heartbeat. WordPress is a big name in the industry, and the support is phenomenal. If I don’t know about something specific, odds are someone else has come across that same issue and they are real good about passing that knowledge on.
Robb: What would be your biggest complaint about WordPress?
Jason: It is hard to say it is a complaint, as it really just falls on the user, but security is always a concern. It seems there is always something out there that is able to get into your site some weird way. But we have our servers locked down pretty good, and we do regular backups, so in the event something were to happen, downtime would be minimal.
Robb: If you could change one thing about WordPress, what would that be?
Jason: The only thing I would change would be the coding. I know it can be different for certain sites, but ours has some pretty intense PHP in it, and it is hard for someone who is not familiar with that language to make any real changes. I know it is different for certain themes and what have you, but for ours, it is dealing with the code. So I guess maintainability for the end user when it comes to custom themes.
Robb: Sounds like someone was looking for a little job security when they designed the site. Either that, or we need to start learning some PHP so we can catch up with everyone else.
Jason: Yah, no kidding.
Robb: Jason, thank you for your time, and the site looks great. Thanks for taking the time to chat with me today.
Although Jason did not design the site himself, he does do all the maintenance, which can be a big task itself. Our company used a third party to design our site and they originally asked us what we wanted in a site. They did not follow those guidelines that we laid out for them, and now we the customer are paying the consequences. The code is very hard to manage, and to make any changes to it results in catastrophic effects to a substantial amount of the content.
That being said, custom themes are nice, but if your client is planning on making changes over time, perhaps keep that in mind so they are not cursing your name to everyone they know until they have the site redesigned by someone else.