How can I manage DITA content within a content management system (CMS)?

Managing DITA content within a Content Management System (CMS) involves the integration of structured, topic-based content into a CMS platform to streamline content creation, editing, storage, version control, and publishing processes. DITA content management within a CMS offers organizations an efficient way to create, organize, and deliver structured content for various purposes, including documentation, training materials, and more.

Managing DITA content within a CMS involves a number of components. These include integration, storage and version control, structured authoring, content reuse, metadata management, workflow management, localization, and publishing and delivery.


This is the first step to integrating the DITA content creation and management process with your CMS. This may require configuring the CMS to recognize DITA markup and elements, ensuring seamless handling of DITA-specific features.

Storage and Version Control

The CMS serves as a central repository for all DITA content. It provides version control features to track changes made to topics and maps over time. This ensures that previous versions of content may always be accessed and reverted to if needed.

Structured Authoring

Users can create DITA content directly within the CMS, leveraging structured authoring tools that enforce DITA schema rules. These tools often provide intuitive interfaces that guide authors in adhering to DITA’s structured format.

Content Reuse

CMS systems enable efficient content reuse. DITA’s modularity is particularly valuable in this context. Authors can create topics that are stored in the CMS and reused across multiple documents or projects. This helps maintain consistency and reduces duplication.

Metadata Management

Metadata associated with DITA content, such as attributes and keys, can be managed within the CMS. This metadata can aid in content organization, searching, and filtering.

Workflow Management

CMS platforms often offer workflow management capabilities, allowing teams to collaborate on content creation, review, and approval. Custom workflows can be defined, tailored to specific organizational processes.


For multilingual content, the CMS can assist in managing translations and localized versions of DITA content. This includes organizing translated topics, ensuring proper language attributes, and streamlining the translation process.

Publishing and Delivery

The CMS can publish DITA content into various formats, including HTML, PDF, or other output types. Integration with publishing tools and automation can simplify the publishing process and ensure that content is consistently delivered in the desired formats.


In this example, a company is setting up a CMS to manage DITA content for a product documentation project. The process may look like:

  • Integration: The CMS is configured to recognize DITA structures, allowing users to create and edit DITA topics and maps directly within the CMS interface.
  • Storage and Version Control: All DITA topics and maps are stored in the CMS repository, with version control ensuring that changes are tracked over time.
  • Structured Authoring: Authors use the structured authoring tools provided by the CMS to create DITA-compliant content. The CMS enforces DITA schema rules, helping authors maintain proper structure.
  • Content Reuse: When a new product version is released, authors can easily reuse existing DITA topics and only update the content that has changed, reducing the time and effort required for documentation updates.
  • Metadata Management: Metadata such as product version, audience, or language attributes can be managed within the CMS, simplifying content organization and retrieval.
  • Workflow Management: The CMS allows authors, reviewers, and subject matter experts to collaborate within defined workflows, ensuring content quality and accuracy.
  • Localization: For a global audience, the CMS facilitates the creation and management of translated versions of DITA content, ensuring that each language version is well-maintained.
  • Publishing and Delivery: The CMS can automate the publishing process, generating HTML and PDF output based on DITA content and templates, and making it available through various channels, such as websites or documentation portals.