Who is involved in a web site project

The success of a web site is dependent on the range of people involved in its development, and how well they work as a team. Typical profiles of team members follow:

• Site sponsors. These will be senior managers who will effectively be paying for the system. They will understand the strategic benefits of the system and will be keen that the site is implemented successfully to achieve the objectives they have set. Sponsors will also aim to encourage staff by means of their own enthusiasm and will stress why the introduction of the system is important to the business and its workers. This will help overcome any barriers to introduction of the web site.

• Site owner. 'Ownership' will typically be the responsibility of a marketing manager or e-commerce manager, who may be devoted full-time to overseeing the site in a large company; it may be part of a marketing manager's remit in a smaller company.

• Project manager. This person is responsible for the planning and coordination of the web site project. He or she will aim to ensure the site is developed within the budget and time constraints that have been agreed at the start of the project, and that the site delivers the planned-for benefits for the company and its customers.

• Site designer. The site designer will define the 'look and feel' of the site, including its layout and how company brand values are transferred to the web.

• Content developer. The content developer will write the copy for the web site and convert it to a form suitable for the site. In medium or large companies this role may be split between marketing staff or staff from elsewhere in the organisation who write the copy and a technical member of staff who converts it to the graphics and HTML documents forming the web page and does the programming for interactive content.

• Webmaster. This is a technical role. The webmaster is responsible for ensuring the quality of the site. This means achieving suitable availability, speed, working links between pages and connections to company databases. In small companies the webmaster may take on graphic design and content developer roles also.

• Stakeholders. The impact of the web site on other members of the organisation should not be underestimated. Internal staff may need to refer to some of the information on the web site or use its services.

While the site sponsor and site owner will work within the company, many organisations outsource the other resources since full-time staff cannot be justified in these roles. There are a range of different choices for outsourcing which are summarised in Activity 7.1.

We are seeing a gradual blurring between these different types of supplier as they recruit expertise so as to deliver a 'one-stop shop' or 'full-service agency', but they still tend to be

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