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Content Flow is a WordPress plugin by SMILE which allows you to define and customise a workflow system for the creation and management of content across your organisation.

With a comprehensive and bespoke permissions system, Content Flow is designed to mitigate publishing nightmares by letting you define the levels of responsibility in your organisation’s workflow.

Running a website at an enterprise-class scale requires distributing a load of content management among many people. But governing this can be tricky. If you turn a blind eye, then very quickly, your website will turn into a wild west where content is up for grabs by anyone.

Content Flow takes care of this for you, giving you the confidence to delegate work across your team, safe in the knowledge that your staff are able to operate safely and effectively within the scope of their individual remits.


In a typical Content Flow workflow, content has a designated owner as well as editors and publishers. Content can be written and modified by editors, but only published by a publisher. 

Publishers take responsibility for reviewing content and providing feedback. When editors assign a publisher (or publishers) to a post and send it for review, automated email notifications are triggered. If content is accepted, only then is content published. If rejected, publishers can help the editors understand why with editorial notes. As you can see, this architecture is completely role-based and results in a clear and easily understood audit trail.

Content Flow allows you to confidently increase the number of people who can edit the website, in a way that prioritises content review. By removing the obstacle of dependency on a small team of skilled individuals, you empower your staff and create longer-lasting advocates.

Version History

Content Flow essentially enables two timelines for a piece of content. The working branch, and the public branch, This means that you can edit content behind the scenes without having to create a new post or worry about bringing the existing post offline!

Deletions are run through a request process that requires at least two users’ confirmation. We also install a Governance Manager role that acts as a failsafe alternative to get content deleted or updated quickly.

Ongoing Auditing

With Content Flow, you are able to define a timeframe outside of which content is considered out of date. Reports can be pulled up wherever content requires attention based on the expiry date and/or broken hierarchical links. All user accounts have activity logged and as a result, reports can be drawn upon dates and times of contribution, most recent logins to the system, permissions history and more.

Content Flow also extends the publish box to include a “content expiry date” – once this date is reached, you con configure Content Flow to have the post automatically convert to “pending review” – therefore removing it from public consumption. This is reportable and sortable from directly within the administrative dashboard. Don’t want content pulled automatically? No problem, there’s an option for that too.

 Integration with OnCourse

SMILE created Content Flow with our exclusive Course Information System (OnCourse) in mind, and vice versa. Together they form a powerful and easy-to-use course management experience for HE institutions and their staff.