Case Study: Taxonomy – Professional Services

A consulting company was having difficulty controlling and finding various documents on their shared drive. If, and when they were found, they were often not of the version anticipated, and contained unexpected changes. This problem was a growing concern. If it were to continue, the organization’s future accreditation could be in jeopardy due to non-compliance.

Determining which of the 120+ staff had access to which information was impossible. A standard approach for assigning access permissions, and for creating, managing or

destroying documents did not exist. Shared storage was beginning to look like a digital landfill.

The initial task was to identify the business priorities and needs. The business unit had four levels of hierarchy, each with a different need for access and privacy. Detailed requirements and input from the business unit’s stakeholders were gathered. From this information, system requirements were established. Policies and standard procedures, complete with a file plan, structure and controlled vocabulary designed to ensure consistency, confidentiality, document integrity, and clarity.

Once the planning and training were completed, the new structure was implemented. Electronic files were transferred. Document confidentiality and integrity were secured. The new structure and naming conventions facilitated easy document storage and retrieval; and improved orientation and ramp up time for new hires. Documents were no longer lost or mistakenly overwritten – and they were easy to find. The project was completed without service interruption, within six months – on time and on budget.