Download a list of the most important skills for a small government web team.
You might as well admit it.
That means the people on your team need to be able to support a very wide-range of activity - from ordinary day-to-day operations (QA, publishing, analytics, etc) to advanced, high falutin' digital awesomeness (UX, content strategy, etc).
Mom-n-Pop's general store
One way to think of web operations is like a small general store.
To keep a small store running, everyone needs to know how to do just about everything. In addition everyone also needs a deeper expertise in one or two areas for when the need arises.
For example, everyone needs to know how to operate the checkout - but one person must be adept at cash reconciliation and account management.
It's the same on a web team.
'Specialist Generalists' rule!
Small web teams thrive with Specialist Generalists.
Everyone on a small web team needs a good general competence in all core web disciplines (content, design, code, analytics, etc). But everyone also needs specialisms in a few key areas.
For example, everyone should know how to write in plain English, but at least one person must have advanced Content Design skills.
I've worked with web teams for 20+ years and the core skills needed to keep the show on the road are broadly stable. Download a sample list of core skills above or explore a more complete framework in the 'Web Management Masterclass'.
Warning! Don't romanticise small teams
Of course, we shouldn't romanticise the capability of small web teams. They're not "small". They're stunted. The reason is they're in penury.
Most colleagues outside of web teams have no idea what we web folks actually do ("...something about design?!?")
This blind spot is why web teams are critically underfunded. And that is why many websites fail (especially in government), leading to repeated and wasteful "redesigns".
The truth is that it is becoming harder and harder for even the best teams to cope.
Web has become so complex and specialised that we are well past 'peak geek'. No-one person can know it all any more.
Just think of how much more sophisticated GA4 is compared to GA Universal. It is a transformational change that many struggle with - even the specialists.
And it's only beginning.
Labels: Content Design