13 Replies Latest reply on Oct 25, 2010 10:08 AM by mdcrocker

    Taxonomies of your intranets? Impact of categories?

      Hi folks!


      I thought it would be interesting if we shared our strategies for organizing our intranets. Ours has grown a bit unwieldy and I want to simplify it (and make use of categories) - I thought a discussion of what works / what doesn't work in intranet taxonomies would be useful!


      Currently our taxonomy is basically team/department-based, as shown below (this isn't the full taxonomy but it gives you the idea). There were also concerns from the project sponsor about having too many top-level communities, so we grouped some of the departments (e.g. Consulting is a grouping of several different teams, as is Operations).


      • Operations
        • Finance
          • Finance - Private
        • Facilities
          • Facilities - Private
      • HR
        • HR Private
        • Recruiting
      • IT
        • WebOps
        • IT Private
      • Business Development
        • Biz Dev - Private
      • Consulting
        • Project Management
        • User Experience
        • Engineering
          • .NET
          • Java
          • RIA
          • ...
        • Creative
      • Water Cooler
      • Customers
        • Customer 1
          • Project 1
        • Customer 2
          • Project 1
          • Project 2


      Some drawbacks of this approach:

      • People are a little worried about using the "Private" spaces because they don't have any visibility into who has access to these spaces
      • The taxonomy gets pretty deep
      • Hard to know where to put things that are cross-department (e.g. an announcement about the rollout of a new project)


      Some things I'm thinking of

      •    Turn the Private spaces into secret groups so people can see who has access to the area, also easier for the admin to manage the area
      • Use categories in place of some of the spaces (e.g. Java / RIA / .NET)
      • Update the taxonomy to be less department-based and more resource-type based, e.g.
        • Office Resources (with categories for Buildings, Finance...)
        • Internal Tools (with categories for Intranet, Basecamp, Phones, Email, etc)
        • Marketing & Business Development (with categories for Template, Example Doc, Case Study, etc)
      • Doing card sorts with some of our existing intranet content with lots of our intranet users to see how people categorize stuff on their own


      Anyway, I've rambled a bit. But I'm interested to know how you've structured your intranets and your learnings from that / what you think of my ideas for updating our intranet taxonomy.



      - Caroline