Like many companies, this global client had assets and offices in many countries without consistency in where information was stored and how it was organized. Employees were frustrated by the amount of time needed to find information. In cases where the hunt was unsuccessful,
money was spent to recreate content they knew already existed ‘somewhere,’ and in cases where the hunt was successful, they were not always confident it was the most recent, trusted version.
Overall, this is not a great situation to be faced with when business decisions need to be made using information that may be outdated or incomplete, and our client was painfully aware of this fact.
The current state also made it difficult to dispose of content no longer needed and demonstrate compliance with their records management policies and regulatory requirements. Having so much stuff cluttering repositories compounded the problem of finding the current, trusted version of a document.
Knowing that information reliability, findability, and lifecycle management could be improved if each content management system shared the same information architecture, the client hired Access Sciences to develop an enterprise taxonomy to facilitate cross-functional content findability, accommodate the business usage needs of individual departments across their repositories, and enable the defensible disposition of content no longer needed.
In order to develop the taxonomy, we collaborated with client subject matter experts to understand how the different groups worked with their information in support of business processes and decision making. This understanding enabled us to identify the key information (facets and terms) employees had available to them in order to search for content, regardless of whether the content was in their department repository or created by another department.
Once we had a working start on the facets and terms of the taxonomy, we conducted sessions with over 30 functional workgroups to test them out and make improvements. We did our testing by having the creators and users of the content answer the following questions:
Once we finished our design and testing sessions, we incorporated records management policy requirements into the taxonomy, designed a governance structure and policy to maintain the taxonomy going forward, and provided the client with an on-line survey and video presentation to allow them to solicit additional global feedback.
Coming out of this project…
November 2, 2017