One immediate benefit developers stand to gain from adopting the Zend Framework is a complete resolution for managing website layouts and pages. Gone is the need to devise strategies for important tasks such as managing the code repeatedly used throughout the site to carry out special formatting actions. Instead, you can just embrace the framework's conventions and move on to the next battle.
Many PHP developers employ an approach involving managing page headers and footers in separate files and then using
require() statements to assemble the page. While this approach may be fine for simple sites, it quickly becomes a burden as the site grows in complexity. The Zend Framework greatly improves upon this approach by utilizing a single template file (known as the layout), which is dynamically wrapped around the site's pages.
In his PHPBuilder.com article, Jason Gilmore introduces some of the fundamental concepts behind managing layouts within your Zend Framework-driven layouts.