Information architecture designing and organising digital information spaces part vii enterprise ia
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Information Architecture Designing and Organising Digital Information Spaces Part VII. Enterprise IA. busi · ness strat · e · gy n. Defining how an organization will use its scarce resources to achieve sustainable competitive advantage. The Origins of Strategy.

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Information architecture designing and organising digital information spaces part vii enterprise ia

Information Architecture Designing and Organising Digital Information SpacesPart VII. Enterprise IA

Busi ness strat e gy n

busi·ness strat·e·gy n.

  • Defining how an organization will use its scarce resources to achieve sustainable competitive advantage.

The origins of strategy

The Origins of Strategy

  • “That general is skillful in attack whose opponent does not know what to defend; and he is skillful in defense whose opponent does not know what to attack.” circa 500 BC

  • Sun Tzu, The Art of War

What is strategy

What is Strategy?

  • strat·e·gy

  • The science and art of using all the forces of a nation to execute approved plans as effectively as possible during peace or war.

  • The art or skill of using stratagems in endeavors such as politics and business.

  • strat·e·gem

  • A clever, often underhand scheme for achieving an objective.

What is business strategy

What is Business Strategy?

  • “Strategy is the creation of a unique and valuable position, involving a different set of activities.”

  • “But the essence of strategy is in the activities – choosing to perform activities differently or to perform different activities than rivals.”

  • Michael Porter, Harvard Business School

  • in his book On Competition

Strategic fit at vanguard

Strategic Fit at Vanguard

  • Early in its history, Vanguard established“a mutual structure without precedent in the industry – a structure in which the funds would be operated solely in the best interests of their shareholders.”

  • Since“strategy follows structure,”it made sense to pursue“a high level of economy and efficiency; operating at bare-bones levels of cost…for the less we spend, the higher the returns – dollar for dollar – for our shareholders/owners.”

  • John C. Bogle, Founder of The Vanguard Group


Busi ness strat e gy n

  • Vanguard’s Activity System Map. Adapted from On Competition

  • Featured in Information Architecture for the World Wide Web


Strategy revisited

Strategy Revisited

  • “We are the blind people

  • and strategy formation is

  • our elephant. Since no one

  • has the vision to see the

  • entire beast, everyone has

  • grabbed hold of some part

  • or other and railed on in

  • utter ignorance about the rest.”

  • Henry Mintzberg, McGill University

  • in his book Strategy Safari

  • (written with Bruce Ahlstrand and Joseph Lampel)

Busi ness strat e gy n


  • The Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning by Henry Mintzberg (1993)



Strategy defined as 5 p s

Strategy Defined as 5 P’s

  • Plan. A direction, guide, course of action.

  • Pattern. Consistency in behavior over time.

  • Position. Locating specific products in specific markets.

  • Perspective.Way of doing things (The HP Way)

  • Ploy. Specific maneuver to outwit.

  • From Strategy Safari (Mintzberg, Ahlstrand, Lampel)

Busi ness strat e gy n

  • In today’s marketplace, it is the organizational capability to adapt that is the only sustainable competitive advantage.

  • Willie Pietersen, Reinventing Strategy

Pace layering on the web

Pace Layering on the Web

Enterprise ia

Enterprise IA

  • For an excellent overview, read:

  • Enterprise Information Architecture: Don’t Do ECM Without It

  • By Tony Byrne, EContent Magazine, May 2004

  • “Two questions resound throughout the content industry: Why do Enterprise Content Management (ECM) projects take so long to implement? And why do they fail with such alarming frequency? While all enterprise-level IT projects prove to be difficult and risky undertakings, a deeper examination of the ECM challenge in particular will reveal an endemic inattention to—or at best belated appreciation of—its critical corollary: the need for Enterprise Information Architecture (EIA).”

Busi ness strat e gy n

Case studies

Case Studies

Case study msweb

Case Study: MSWeb

  • 3,100,000+ pages

  • 50,000 authors/users in 74 countries

  • 8,000+ separate intranet sites

  • Employees spend more than one hour per day seeking information

  • Create a unified enterprise information portal

Msweb an integrated solution

MSWeb: An Integrated Solution

  • Multi-Disciplinary Team

  • Integrated Information and Technology Architecture

  • 3 Types of Taxonomies

    • Category Labels

    • Metadata Schema

    • Descriptive Vocabularies

      • geography, languages, proper names, organizations / business units, subjects, products, standards / technology

Busi ness strat e gy n


Case study hp employee portal

Case StudyHP Employee Portal

  • Methodology (9 Weeks)

  • Opinion Leader Interviews

  • User Research

  • Content, Classification & Search Log Analysis

  • Deliverables

  • User & Opinion Leader Reports

  • Strategy Recommendations Report

  • Final Presentations

Employee portal major problems

Employee PortalMajor Problems

  • Extremely difficult to find things via the portal

  • No idea what category to select in taxonomy

  • Misleading labels (e.g., “HP Policies”)

  • Search is important for users but works poorly

  • Employees use “wrong” keywords

  • Employees feel guilty using alternative navigation tools

  • 19 of 44 user testing sessions (43%) expired unsuccessfully at 3 minutes

Employee portal recommendations

Employee PortalRecommendations

  • Provide Multiple Finding Tools

    • classification schemes (taxonomies)

    • search

    • site index

  • Leverage CMS

    • distributed responsibility (metadata)

    • content value tiers (authority, strategic value, popularity)

    • incentives to authors/owners

  • Improve Search

    • integrate with browsing

    • filtering, zones, synonym management

Employee portal recommendations1

Employee PortalRecommendations

* implement in short-term

Busi ness strat e gy n


Formats level 1

formatslevel 1

Formats level 11

formatslevel 1

Site index


Busi ness strat e gy n

Ia therefore i am

IA Therefore I Am

  • Peter Morville


  • Semantic Studios


  • Asilomar Institute for Information Architecture


  • Findability


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