Forum Communications invests in agile future with new headless CMS

The multimedia news company has chosen CUE to help journalists be more efficient and allow development resources to focus on growth opportunities.

February 21, 2018

Launching its first website in 1995, Forum Communications Company has been a part of the American digital media landscape since the beginning: “Our websites sort of grew up with the internet. They matured together,” says Adrian Dawson-Becker, Technical Analyst at Forum Communications.

But in 2017, when the digital media landscape seemed to be changing more than ever, Forum Communications decided that their current Drupal system had aged enough. It was time for a new content management system that could propel the business further.

“From our newsroom’s perspective, moving forward means finding solutions that streamline our journalists’ workflow, and making sure their work looks great to our end users,” says Dawson-Becker, explaining benefits his company sees in CUE.

CUE is a content creation platform developed for the constantly changing media environment. Its flexible and extensible architecture simplifies the job of creating and distributing content. It is made to help companies react quickly and to foster experimentation with new media forms.

What does digital-first really mean?

Forum Communications has been taking steps to become a digital-first media organization for a while. But it was during its search for a new CMS that the company  discovered what digital-first really means for a news organization operating in more than 30 locations across North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin in the US.

“We realized that Forum Communications is a content engine. We needed a tool that would help us manage content rather than websites. It was clear that CUE was focused on providing tools that made content creation easier and would allow us to streamline our newsroom processes,” says Dawson-Becker, and continues: “We saw that CUE could be a catalyst for change in the way we work together across multiple locations without disrupting our print production process. CUE’s user experience and tools are intuitive and modern in design, which we expect will reduce training time and costs."
 

IT has needs too forum communications.jpg 


The platform for an agile future

News outlets need more than just a content delivery system. They need ad tech, analytics, video and many other tools, each providing a specific business or user-related function. Dawson-Becker believes his company has found the platform to harness these tools.

“We were drawn to CUE for its extensibility,” he says. “We know what we need to plug in today, and we believe CUE is more prepared for tomorrow than many other CMS vendors. CUE offers us a headless CMS, which gives us the flexibility to update our user experience and deliver content to multiple endpoints without hard-coded restraints.”

CUE will not only be beneficial for the newsroom, the journalists and their workflow. “IT has needs too. Ease of management, redundancy, and scalability are very important to us. Running our sites with CUE in the cloud will allow our IT department to focus on integrations and updates rather than simply keeping things running”, he says.

Developed for media by media

CCI and Escenic have developed CUE in close collaboration with leading media corporations, including Welt (Germany), The McClatchy Company (USA), Groupe Rossel (Belgium), JP/ Politikens Hus (Denmark), and others.

“Insights and requirements from some of the best news organizations around world have shaped the development of CUE, and continued expansion and refinement of this platform never stops,” says Carsten Boe Jensen, CEO, CCI Americas.
“We’re thrilled to have Forum Communications added to our customer base that will keep influencing CUE. Forum’s digital sites, apps, newspapers, and broadcast stations will reap the benefits of transformation in both the newsroom and the IT department.”