Do you run a big website that publishes hundreds (or more) articles each month? Or maybe you have a small team of editors that take care of the quality of your website’s content and you want to make sure that their work is done correctly? Then you need something that will make your WordPress editorial review experience better. Something that will allow you to automate this process.
The great news is that such a solution exists. It is called Oasis Workflow and in this post I will present to you its powerful options.
Why Oasis Workflow is the solution you need?
Some of the reasons have been mentioned at the beginning of this post. Oasis Workflow will allow you to automate the entire editorial process of your WordPress website.
Let’s review the following example: You own a WordPress blog. You and a couple of authors create the content on a daily basis. You also have several editors that take care for different things regarding the website’s content. Some of them are in charge of improving the posts in terms of better SEO. Others are responsible for the images and other multimedia that should appear in each article. You also have editors who are correcting grammar and punctuation.
What is to happen to each blog post without a correct editorial review process? Unless you are using an external task management system, then the answer is – chaos! Imagine creating the article and monitoring the status of the draft by contacting directly and manually each of the editors. Now imagine what will happen if some of them do not understand you correctly and the article is published with incorrect content?
And if you are using an external task management system, then you are taking the risk of distraction. Why? Because you need to use two solutions simultaneously: the WordPress website and its post drafts on one hand and the task management system on the other. This solution might work but it is not the optimal one, believe me.
That is why you need a plugin like Oasis Workflow. It will help you automate the process and what is more important – it will keep the focus on the website.
How does Oasis Workflow function?
When you install Oasis Workflow you can go to your WordPress admin panel and then click on the Workflows menu. Select “Add New Workflow” and specify a title and description. Click on the Save button and you will be presented with the canvas for creating the editorial review process.
There are three process options that you can choose from:
- Assignment – a step that requires another user to take control over the article before it is published;
- Review – in most cases you’d prefer this to be the first step of your editorial workflow. Here the article needs to be reviewed by the respective users (in most cases the Editors of your WordPress website);
- Publish – in most cases this will be your final step where a respective role (most likely the WordPress Admin) should publish the post or return it to either the authors or the editors.
Each of these processes can be placed on the WorkFlow canvas by using drag and drop. Then you need to edit them. By default a screen will appear when you place one of the processes on the canvas. There you need to specify the roles that are to be responsible for this step and some other options. Then you need to place a second step and make a relation with the first one.
This is done by clicking on the small square on one of the steps and then drag to the next step. Another screen will appear asking you to specify the Connection Settings by choosing the post status after the transition and whether the path is success or failure. Success paths will be colored in blue and will be pointing from the initial step to the sequel one. The failure path will transition the post to the prequel step thus returning it to the originator for correction.
Speaking of the post status, here are your possible options:
- Ready to Publish
- With Author
For any workflow you can add as many processes as you wish. Simply select one of the three options, drag it to the canvas and make the connections with the rest. Simple as that!
Before you are done with creating your first editorial workflow, Oasis Workflow will ask you to specify a couple of things:
- Start Date
- End Date
- To what content types and user roles will this workflow be applicable;
Next you need to save your workflow and when you start creating a new post or a page you will be able to submit it to the editorial process. Then all of your users will know what to do with this content and will pass it on until it is finally ready to be published. Thus Oasis Workflow will help you save time and effort and will improve your productivity and content quality.
You can learn more about creating editorial workflows from this video:
And this video will show you how to use your workflows:
What else can Oasis Workflow offer me and my team?
This plugin has a free version that will allow you to create basic workflows. However the pro version, which can be purchased from www.oasisworkflow.com offers vast amounts of additional options that you will find more suitable for your project. With the pro version you can achieve great flexibility especially with the add ons that are available for it.
I will present several of the pro version functionalities (core and add ons) so that you can learn how to create the optimal editorial workflow:
Support for Published articles
A post has been created, edited, approved and published. Great! But as we all know we have to check our content from time to time in order to be sure that it is up to date. When something needs to be updated we do this and thus an old post continues to provide value for our visitors. Let’s not forget that this is also very important in terms of SEO as well.
However if you send the update for this post to the standard workflow, the post will be transformed to a draft or to another status (depending on your workflow). This means that it will not be available online and it will not be accessible by users or search-engine bots. This is not OK, especially the latter as it may cause damage on the indexation and ranking of your website.
So unless you want to work as fast as possible (which by the way increases the risk of making mistakes) you need a solution that will allow you to focus on the update, pass it to the workflow and publish it when ready while keeping the original version online until the process is done.
Such a solution is provided by the pro version of Oasis Workflow. You are able to make a revision which will result in an offline copy of your post. You and your team will be able to work on this copy and when the final verdict is “ready to publish” the copy will disappear and the original post will be updated with the changes. Great, isn’t it?
This video presents this functionality in details:
Editorial Comments Add-on
Have you been using Google Docs or Microsoft Word? Then you know that there is a possibility to add comment to a specific part of the content. And do you want the same functionality in WordPress? Then you can get it by purchasing the Editorial Comments Add-on. With it you can mark a section of the text and click on the blurb icon that will be available in the visual editor (more specifically the TinyMCE toolbar). Then you can add your comment and it will be displayed in the Inbox section of Oasis Workflow, as well as in the Workflow History page. What is more important is that each comment will also be visible within the edit screen in a special widget.
Editorial Comments will allow your team to focus on the problematic parts of your article thus improving their productivity and work quality. In my opinion this add-on is a must-have!
Editorial Checklist Add-on
We have been discussing edits, assignment and so on. However one very important thing has been missing – strict rules! And the Editorial Checklist Add-on will allow you to create them. This will ensure that the post is in top quality before moving on to the next step of the workflow process. This add-on may be used as a blocker in case the specified rules are not completed. Of course you may also use it just as a reminder (i.e. the checklist options will not be mandatory before moving the post to the next step), but this is not the optimal solution.
In order to add this functionality you need to create Condition Groups (there will be a special menu for this purpose). You will be presented with several options:
- Checklist options that are applied on the attribute in context. For example the post title has to contain 10 words;
- Checklist options that are applied on the containing attribute. For example the post should contain 4 images and at least 3 links and one category;
- Checklist options that are applied on the content as a whole;
When created, these checklist options/conditions may be applied to your workflow by selecting them in the edit screen of each step. More information on how to use this wonderful add-on can be found here.
This concludes the review on Oasis Workflow. There are many other add-ons and options that you may consider useful (and they really are). In my opinion this plugin really takes WordPress to a whole new level. With Oasis Workflow you can have many editorial workflows and you can always manage the already created ones. Make sure that you read the official documentation as well.
So what do you think, friends? Is this the solution for your editorial team? Share your thoughts and questions in the comment section below and do not forget to share this post in social media as well.
See you soon, friends!