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Looking Further at Successful Planning for Taxonomies in SharePoint 2010

In the last post to this blog we looked at the importance of including representatives from line of business (LOB) units within the project planning team for taxonomies. An additional reason for including these users in the planning group, as Mike Doane points out in his video training class on this topic, Planning Taxonomy Implementation in SharePoint 2010 – Part One, is to ensure executive support for an adequate implementation budget. An adequate budget, of course, is a crucial component of a successful implementation; therefore, reaching out to LOB executives to inform them of a plan to implement taxonomies for SharePoint 2010 makes complete sense.

LOB managers, as well, should be included in the implementation planning team. These individuals will, in all likelihood, decide whether or not to allocate personnel to the project as well as when and how to disperse budget funds to keep the project moving forward. More technical members of the project team should be familiar with demonstrating return on investment (ROI) scenarios in order to keep LOB managers, and the executives behind them, up to date with the project progress.

Project leaders can be confidently selected from Information Architects. These SharePoint users have the necessary background — and implementation perspective — to understand how taxonomies actually support a comprehensive governance plan for SharePoint, as well as a critically important dependency whereby computing processes are properly aligned to deliver on business objectives. Information Architects need to become familiar with a “Why”, “How”, “What” approach to framing proposals and reviews. “Why” amounts to the rationale for implementing taxonomies in the first place. “How” amounts to the actual plan for implementing taxonomies. Finally, “What” amounts to the management plan, going forward (and post implementation) for maintaining the taxonomy in proper working condition.

As Mike also notes, it is essential to propose objectives that will benefit, in the end, the actual SharePoint end users, who will be using the system on a daily basis. After all, impetus to explore the possibility of using taxonomies for SharePoint 2010 usually arise as the result of one of two conditions, or a combination of both:

  • Locating information stored in SharePoint Lists and Libraries is difficult. Users are not comfortable using SharePoint, or
  • “Information is Siloed” (quoted directly from this training course. a link has been provided, above, to the entire class)

Therefore, Information Architects heading up these taxonomy projects should develop familiarity with both of these project drivers. Further, they need to develop a style of proposal that speaks to the concerns of both cases, once they have enlisted management and executive support for a corrective plan.

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