Wolters Kluwer

Embracing a digital future with PublishOne

Wolters Kluwer is a leading provider of professional information, software solutions, and services. Globally, it delivers content to millions of people in multiple fields, including tax and accounting, risk and compliance, and legal and regulatory. Wolters Kluwer serves customers in over 180 countries, employs over 21,000 people, publishes content in 45 different languages, and works with around 30,000 external authors.

The company makes multi-divisional and multinational use of PublishOne to support its publishing efforts in two key ways. One, by helping traditional print markets with the transition to digital. Two, by giving authors, vendors, and editorial staff a shared digital space to work and collaborate.

Multichannel publishing across multiple markets
Wolters Kluwer provides trusted content through its operations in more than 40 countries. Legal commentary – providing up-to-date, detailed information on specific areas of law – is one example of the many content types produced. The way this professional content is delivered and consumed has evolved from a singular print or digital channel to multichannel publishing.

The company offers two main digital services: a searchable retrieval platform and a suite of ‘expert solutions’. The latter integrates with customers’ workflows, delivering information at the point of need, and focussing on direct answers instead of search results. Facilitating this requires content that’s both granular and regularly updated. Content updates are no longer driven by publishing cycles, but by customer demand for the latest and greatest information.

With the increasing digitization of its professional information products and services across multiple international markets – and the huge amount of overlap between countries – Wolters Kluwer decided to standardize its tools and processes throughout its legal and regulatory division. The company could also realize cost savings in maintenance and licensing by reducing the number of digital tools in its tech stack.

Although 94% of Wolters Kluwer’s revenue comes from digital products and services, there are still some markets with a relatively high demand for print products. To accommodate legacy, print markets, whilst helping customers to transition and embrace new digital technologies, Wolters Kluwer required an editorial platform that was backwards compatible with print formats and future-ready for existing and emerging digital channels. In PublishOne, it found the solution.

All authors and content in one digital workspace
The implementation of PublishOne at Wolters Kluwer is a joint project between business, IT and infrastructure. The needs of the business define the requirements, the workflows, the roles, and the capabilities. This includes the publishing format, such as XML or EPUB.

Whether print, digital, or both, PublishOne provides Wolters Kluwer with a single home for all its legal and regulatory content. This creates a layer of consistency and standardization across different countries and publishing workflows. It also makes it simpler to define and standardize metadata. The core system is the same for everyone, no matter where they’re based or which language they’re working in.

What’s vital for Wolters Kluwer is that technology doesn’t hinder content creation because ultimately the value delivered to end customers is authors’ technical expertise. In fact, the company is committed to lowering technical barriers so that thousands of authors can focus on producing content, without the need for extensive training on new technology.

PublishOne’s friendly, simple, and modern UI combined with a thoughtful UX concept makes it easy to use for both technical and non-technical users. It’s also ideal for authors because they can continue using familiar writing tools like Microsoft Word from inside the editorial platform. That’s one reason why, for legal and regulatory content, the entire publishing lifecycle happens inside PublishOne, and only finished products get exported to external systems.

This consistency extends to the connections between the content-handling systems. The open architecture makes it easy to integrate PublishOne with other technologies, such as XML editors. This creates the opportunity to use highly sophisticated XML schema which constrains the author, and leads to highly structured content. That means Wolters Kluwer can serve various editorial needs on top of the PublishOne environment.

In fact, because PublishOne can comfortably handle multiple editorial workflows, it has a potential use case in any division producing highly structured content. Right now that includes legal and regulatory, tax and accounting, and risk and compliance. In the future, that list could be easily expanded to include other business areas.