Robert Beerworth Team : Web Strategy Tags : Web Design

A Web Producer at Wiliam?

Robert Beerworth Team : Web Strategy Tags : Web Design

I get asked all the time from clients, potential staff and more clients after that. What is a Web Producer or at least at Wiliam?

This is a thousand monkeys working at a thousand typewriters. Soon, they'll have written the greatest novel known to mankind. 
(reads one of the typewriters) "It was the best of times, it was the blurst of times"?! you stupid monkey! (monkey screeches) Oh, shut up.

The Web Producer is at the center of the website and the web development project. They have the vision, the experience and the passion to develop the very best websites, often in the more challenging of circumstances.

After all, they're in the middle of everything. The client, the project team and the website itself.

And modern, commercial, transactional, enterprise websites aren't simple.

And they're only one part of the strategy.

When they roll TV shows, the Producer is the last and most highlighted title. Producers become famous and associated with great work.

Websites should be no different and their Producers are no different.

What marks should the ideal Producer contain?

Given the split of the position, there are two essential ingredients:

1. The ability to envisage and understand, articulate and build a website of the highest possible quality, and commercial outcome.

2. The ability to proactively and effectively run the project - to be a pragmatic, competent project manager with strong and consistent internal and client communication.

From my perspective - as a web designer - a Producer of websites should have as their primary focus, the development of the core website and its attributes. This includes content, though not producing the content.

Understanding the whole client and online strategy (the marketing, traffic plans, commercial model) is important, though knowledge of the intricacies of social media and traffic modeling is not so.

If the functions of building a website could be split in two, the split would be design and development (programming). A Producer must have an eye for quality across both web development aspects, and a reasonable knowledge of how websites operate.

Risk Management is a good part of the role. Big websites have big variables and big (and plentiful) opportunity to cause major project disruption. Content, responsibility, crazy deadlines, limited budgets, crappy hosting partners and finding inexpensive load testing solutions.

Let alone knowing how to use them.

And then there is client communication. Clients with very, varied knowledge, projects at different parts of the build cycle, distinctly different project types and everything in between.

Servicing them each individually and with a high-level of focus can be hard. It is an ultimate ingredient in the role - or at least being able to set the expectation that you are exclusively focused on the client's account as it nears launch… along with all your other websites!

Between all this, you attend (and drive) meetings. You take down change requests and answer questions; you have an opinion on PayPal, though that decision should have been ages ago.

Finally, multiple it by 6 projects.

Life is probably different on the client side. For instance, they have money.

I don't doubt however, that it has its own crazy challenges and fights about the merit of Twitter, and why the business needs a new website anyway.

On the agency side however, being a Web Producer is a pretty serious role, and the pride of pulling off an awesome project and a great result is worth it.

It’s not easy Producing a Wiliam website – and that’s why our Producers do it!