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Implementing a draft publishing workflow

It is critical that all subject matter experts can provide their knowledge to share and empower others. It is also critical to ensure that the content is aligned with your brand identity. This workflow will provide granular control over content added by subject matter experts. Your documentation team can confidently publish new content knowing that it's optimal for the end user. These instructions help to implement a controlled draft publishing workflow in MindTouch.
 

Prerequisites


Stages of a draft publishing workflow


A draft publishing workflow allows for subject matter experts to contribute content and to submit content to a team for review. Implement a defined workflow to control your publishing process:

  1. Draft contribution.  In this the stage, assigned groups are responsible for a drafting content about a specific product or service. Draft contributors only have the ability to create new draft articles to be further reviewed. 
  2. Draft review.  In this stage, assigned subject matter expert groups are responsible for reviewing the draft and vetting the accuracy of information and adherence to company style and branding guidelines. Once reviewers make any necessary adjustments to the content of the article, reviewers change the article's classification to the appropriate stage in the process.
  3. Draft publishing.  In this final stage of the publishing process, assigned groups are responsible for final quality reviews before publishing the article for public consumption. 
     

Create groups even if you plan to assign only one member. Granting individual permissions on pages makes user management difficult later down the road.

 

Implement your workflow


Set up an effective publication workflow by following the steps outlined in this section:

Step 1: Configure your site privacy

Read our article on site and page permissions to learn about privacy considerations:


 

Step 2:  Set up your publishing groups

If your site is authenticated through SAML single sign-on (SSO) you must first create your user groups in your SAML identity provider (IdP).

To follow an effective publishing workflow in MindTouch, set up groups as follows:

  • Contributors.  Users of this group can only create draft articles. Assign the role of Draft Author to this group. 
  • Reviewers.  Users of this group can create draft articles, review draft pages, and change classifications, tags and page summaries. This group cannot publish draft pages. Assign the role of Author to this group.
  • Publishers.  Users of this group can publish draft pages, modify permissions, create draft articles, review draft pages, and change classifications, tags and page summaries. Assign the role of Editor to this group.
     

Groups are listed in alphabetical order in the control panel, not in a workflow order.

 

Step 3: Determine your contributors

Identify the various objectives for each stage of the workflow. Users with different capabilities form groups to create draft pages, review draft pages and publish the content. Consider the following when setting up the workflow.  

  • What is a contributor
  • What responsibility do contributors have?
  • What is a reviewer?
  • What requirements does a reviewer need to meet?
  • What is a publisher?
  • What responsibilities should a publisher have?
     

Step 4: Add users to your publishing groups

If your site is authenticated through SAML SSO you must first assign user in their appropriate groups in your SAML IdP.

Create your users and assign to the appropriate groups as determined by their contribution objectives.  


 

Step 5: Have contributors subscribe to page notifications

Direct all contributors regardless of group membership to subscribe to the pages (or section) for which they are responsible for reviewing and publishing. Subscription notifications provide contributors with details of when a new draft is created and updated and when content is published. 
 

Step 6: Restrict group role functions

To accommodate your publishing workflow, you may want to further restrict which functions your groups have access to. In the example below, the Publisher and Reviewer groups are restricted from moving pages and from accessing dashboard features such as custom header and footer templates, the content ID manager, the template directory, and global variables to further control your workflow. 

Only a user with privileges to edit the Header template can implement the below code.

Hide page elements from specified groups as follows:

  1. Open the Header template in Edit mode.
  2. Click the View drop-down menu and select Source.

  1. Copy the following code into the header template page:
<div class="script-css mt-style-conditional style-wrap" if="user.groups['ADD YOUR REVIEWER GROUP NAME']">
.mt-icon-publish, .mt-user-menu-move-page {
    display: none !important;
}
</div>

<div class="script-css mt-style-conditional style-wrap" if="user.groups['ADD YOUR PUBLISHING GROUP NAME']">
.mt-user-menu-move-page {
    display: none !important;
}
</div>

<div class="script-css mt-style-conditional style-wrap" if="user.groups['ADD YOUR REVIEWER GROUP NAME']">
li.mt-custom-header-listing, li.mt-custom-footer-listing, li.mt-content-id-listing, li.mt-template-directory-listing, li.mt-global-variables-listing {
    display: none !important;
}
</div>
<div class="script-css mt-style-conditional style-wrap" if="user.groups['ADD YOUR PUBLISHING GROUP NAME']">
li.mt-custom-header-listing, li.mt-custom-footer-listing, li.mt-content-id-listing, li.mt-template-directory-listing, li.mt-global-variables-listing {
    display: none !important;
}
</div>
  1. Replace ADD YOUR REVIEWER GROUP NAME in the above code with the names of the groups you have previously set up (i.e. Contributors, Reviewers and Publishers).  
     

Step 7: Apply user group permission to the content hierarchy

Control group access to the whole site, specific hierarchies, categories or guides to control your content creation process. Restrict your contributors, reviewers and publishers to certain pages or sections on your site.
 

Step 8: Create draft status labels for your workflow

Create custom classifications for each stage of your publishing workflow to allow reviewers and publishers to review all draft content in their respective stages in the draft manager (accessed via the Dashboard) and to take appropriate action. Depending on your publishing workflow, assign classifications as follows:

Stage Who sets stage When to set stage Function of stage
Draft Contributors New draft creation Alerts reviewers and publishers that a draft is in the works
Ready for Review Contributors Completed draft Alerts reviewers that a draft is ready for review
In Review Reviewers Review started Alerts other reviewers and publishers that a draft is being reviewed
Rework Reviewers / Publishers Content needs rework Alerts contributors and reviewers that a draft needs more work
Ready to Publish Reviewers Content is reviewed and ready to be publishe Alerts publishers that a draft is ready for final review
Live Publishers Draft is approved and published as "Live" page Marks the page as a live page

 

Step 9: Set the page status

Once custom classifications are created, the status of a page can be set under Page settings on individual pages. 

You may identify additional publishing stages, which can be easily added to adapt to your workflow.