Prior to DatoCMS, HashiCorp was using a traditional CMS to build their online platform. When Jeff Escalante and his team at Carrot (now Virtue) were called to rebuild hashicorp.com from scratch, it was first tasked with taking a deep examination into their content management pipeline to identify any weaknesses or opportunities. HashiCorp was not satisfied by the former solution and needed a new CMS to manage multiple different properties, sharing assets, design and code through a wide range of products.
The team soon discovered several issues with the old solution. First, the CMS was making it hard for developers to conduct simple tasks like text editing and coding.
Second, feedback from the team revealed that the CMS was also difficult to use, took a lot of time to manage and was not intuitive for the editorial team to navigate. “We felt like the CMS wasn’t really designed for a project of that scope. As a developer, you need something more stable and flexible to follow the explosive growth of a company like HashiCorp,” says Jeff.
To Jeff and team it became clear that HashiCorp’s former CMS, while passable for simpler projects, was not designed for the multi-site structure of a fast growing open source and commercial software company. They needed a full-featured and easily scalable CMS that was also capable of handling the company’s growth as smoothly as possible.
Jeff and the team had experience in previous projects using DatoCMS, so they were already familiar with the system and company very well. “DatoCMS has a lot of flexibility, a good pricing range, a great user experience even with deeply linked records, and a comprehensive API,” Jeff says.
Despite his familiarity with the product, Jeff and the team did extensive research and evaluation work with HashiCorp before making a choice, and, in the end, they moved forward with DatoCMS.
DatoCMS gives us flexibility and really good control over validation.
The extensive API was one of the most important selling points that led HashiCorp to choose DatoCMS over competing products. They knew that anything that existed within the old CMS could be migrated over writing a script. “While the migration was tough and took us a while, as any major system transition will, everything about the integration with DatoCMS was quite smooth,” Jeff remembers.
DatoCMS’ Content Delivery API is also written in GraphQL, so HashiCorp could retrieve precisely the data they needed from the API while still taking advantage of all relational records. “We utilize relational records heavily for things like holding on to links between companies, products, talks, videos, blog posts, and everything else to make filtering and finding what you want easy for users, and surfacing related content easy for us” Jeff adds.
Another immediate benefit they saw was the speed with which the DatoCMS staff responds to feedback. Jeff shares, “We are beyond excited about the close relationship we have built between Dato and HashiCorp. It’s amazing. More than once, we have asked, ‘Hey, can we have this thing?’ and the next day, we get back a response, ‘Oh yeah, here it is.’ Unbelievable.”
The project went so well that HashiCorp came in and offered Jeff a position in the company, which he “happily accepted as we had been doing exciting work on their web properties.”