2IBM Total Information ExperienceCertificate agenda, Day 1Morning session:Introductions: Instructors, ClassDefinitionsSkillsLunchAfternoon session:RequirementsMetricsScenarios
3IBM Total Information ExperienceCertificate agenda, Day 2Morning session:DesignIA & Development Process InterlockInformation Experience ModelsModeling for a Seamless Information ExperienceUse ModelLunchAfternoon session:Content modelAccess ModelProgressive Information DisclosureApplying ModelsClosing the Loop (Measuring Success)Summary and wrap-upGraduation celebration
4IBM Total Information ExperienceAbout AndreaTechnical communicator since 1983Areas of expertiseInformation experience design: Content strategy,information architecture, and interaction designfor content display and delivery, within productsand interactive information delivery systemsArchitecture, design, and development of embedded assistance(content within or near the product user interface)Information and product usability, from analysis through validationUser-centered process for information development andinformation experience designIBM Senior Technical Staff Member on corporate Total InformationExperience team in IBM CIO’s officeUniversity of CA Extension certificate coordinator and instructorSTC Fellow, past president (2004-05), former member ofBoard of Directors (1998-2006), and Intercom columnist (withAlyson Riley) of The Strategic IAACM Distinguished Engineer4
5IBM Total Information Experience5About AlysonTechnical communicator since 1995Areas of expertiseContent strategyContent metrics—the business value of contentInformation architecture (my first love!)Interaction design for content deliveryvehicles, and interactive contentInformation and product usability, fromanalysis through validationUser-centered processes for content strategyand scenario-driven information architectureIBM Senior Content Strategist on corporateTotal Information Experience team in theIBM CIO OfficeMember of STC, and Intercom columnist(with Andrea Ames) of The Strategic IA
6IBM Total Information ExperienceSetting the scene for the certificateExperiential through a project (exercises)The project is merely the bagel on which to deliver the cream-cheesy goodness of the strategic IA concepts ☺The scope of the project and discussion is primarily product-specific,due to time constraintsWe know there’s more, and we will occasionally mention the “more”If youre a smart information architect, and we know you are, youll bethinking about the “more” and trying to integrateWhenever we have time, we will address the “more” questionsFor “more,” see our LavaCon Unified Content Strategy Workshopsession: Building a Content Strategy Ecosystem (URL in references)Flow for the workshop…for each topic:ExerciseDebriefFill in the gaps—we will not cover every chart in the discussion, but allof the charts will be on slideshare.net to “take home” ☺
7IBM Total Information ExperienceSuccess factors—OURS!Share a definition of information architecture (IA) and the information architectroleHelp you take away some actionable ways that you can growing your strategicIA skills, define career success, and avoid derailingDefine and use metrics specifically for IA workUnderstand the general IA process, from analysis and requirements definitionthrough delivery of a release-specific information architecture, and how itfunctions within the product development processUnderstand what models are and why they are importantDefine and create use, content, and access modelsUnderstand what progressive information disclosure is and how to apply itApply abstract models to create a concrete IA for a specific product releaseEvaluate results and measure successHave fun!
8IBM Total Information ExperienceIntroductions andBurning questions—YOURS!Tell us:Your nameWhere you workYour role at work (are you a writer? an information architect?)How many years of experience you have in tech commHow many years of experience you have in informationarchitecture (if any)What is the one burning questionyou’d like this certificate session to answer?
9IBM Total Information ExperienceBurning questions: Discussion notesWhat the heck is IA? And what the @#@$?>! do I put on my business card?How to apply IA on a large scale?How to transition from academic IA to applying in a broader context?How do I convince my company to invest in IA?How to implement IA in a large company with established models for delivering information? How to drivechange?How to implement IA in a large company that has no idea that they need it?How to organize a large library of technical information?“Do more with less”—how to spend resources strategically? How to do it all as a very small team?How to deal in your organization with solution-level information experience—how to pull all the contenttogether in an integrated, multi-product environment?How to deal with the people (“we know better”) who think they get this stuff but don’t?Empowering an army of one—how do you drive change as one person influencing a business that doesn’tunderstand this stuff?How does IA help us advocate for the end user?How can I build a system that can provide the right amount of information to the different types of users—having the right amount of depth and breadth? Repurpose info for different types of users at differentlevels?How within IBM/my company do I move into an IA role, in an organization that has a startup mentality?How to market myself as a strategic contributor—stakeholder mgmt, staying out of details?How to proactively structure information for findability long before it gets published?How can I demonstrate value in order to earn respect of management (and others who don’t get it)?Best practices for different target audiences—internal employees, external, new generations (changingcultural mindset), etc.?Demonstrating financial and social valueDifference between IA and content strategy?
10IBM Total Information ExperienceReferencesBuilding a Content Strategy Ecosystem, LavaCon UnifiedContent Strategy Workshop, April 2013:http://slidesha.re/17S782A(or http://www.slideshare.net/aames/creating-a-content-strategy-ecosystem)
12IBM Total Information ExperienceHistoryDefinitions—lots of definitionsInformation architecture in technical communicationInformation architecture’s impact on contentInformation architecture’s impact on businessWhat an IA doesWhat an IA doesn’t doIA compared to other rolesAcknowledgementsReferencesAgenda
13IBM Total Information ExperienceBrief history of information architecture1970 Xerox PARC research lab defines its mission as“the architecture of information”1975 Richard Saul Wurman coins the term informationarchitect1996 Clement Mok, former Apple creative director,launches Studio Archetype, the “identity andinformation architects”1996 Wurman publishes Information Architects1997 The Society for Technical Communication (STC)forms an Information Design group (laterbecomes Information Design and Architecture)1998 Peter Morville and Louis Rosenfeld publishInformation Architecture for the WorldWide Web (Third Edition published 2006)And then all hell broke loose…
14IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat is IA?The practice of structuring information (knowledge or data)for a purpose. These are often structured according to theircontext in user interactions or larger databases. …In thecontext of web design (or design for related media)Information Architecture is defined by the InformationArchitecture Institute as:The structural design of shared information environmentsThe art and science of organizing and labeling websites,intranets, online communities, and software to supportusability and findabilityAn emerging community of practice focused on bringingprinciples of design and architecture to the digitallandscape~ wikipedia
15IBM Total Information ExperienceWait! But some stuff was missing in that definition!Information architecture is also about:Users—Based on a deep understanding of users, their business and taskdomains, and products and solutions for those domainsModels—Requires the application of component modeling techniques toimprove the flexibility and reuse of information solutionsDecisions—The model that drives decisions about delivering an informationexperienceStructure and cognition—Defines the organization of, structure of, andrelationships between ideas that enable users to build a mental model ofinformation within a specific contextOrganization—Defines underlying classification schemes and metadata thatenable searching and customizationWayfinding—Defines the organizing structures (such as navigation) andsignposts (such as labels) that guide users to browse the information and thatimprove retrievability across chunks of informationDesign—Applies the appropriate information design methods to improvescanning within a chunk of informationSimplicity—Applies the principles of minimalism to ensure appropriate choiceof information to present
16IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat is IA? A simpler but more complete definitionInformation architecture is aboutdesigninghigh-value contentdelivered in aneffective information experiencethat enables client success.
17IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat is high value content?High-value content is content that:Speaks directly to client/buyer/user business goalsIncludes only the tasks necessary to achieve those goalsAids the client in making decisions or applying concepts in their ownsituationsIs technically rich in the sense that it includes validated real-worldsamples, examples, best practices, and lessons learnedHigh value content does not:Focus on manipulating elements of a user interface (those things thateveryone knows by now, such as "Type your name in the name field")Describe tasks that cant be mapped to a meaningful goal or objectiveDescribe what to do without explaining how to do itDescribe how to do it without explaining why to do it
18IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat is an effective information experience?
19IBM Total Information ExperienceInformation architecture: 2 scopesStrategic IAAbstractTypical tasks include:—Architect a product’stotal informationexperience (not justtechnical docs)Tactical IAConcreteTypical tasks include:—Update a navigationtree according to designguidelines andstandards—Apply models andguidelines to developinformation architecturefor a product release orself-containedinformation deliverable—Solve architecturalissues with guidancefrom a strategicinformation architect(IA) or informationstrategist—Develop a cross-product orportfolio information experience—Prioritize requirements—Apply models in new and novelways to get validatedimprovements in the end-to-endinformation experience—Provide input for model orguideline improvement—Create and validate new modelsand guidelines
20IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat does strategic IA mean?A strategic IA is:Focused on client perceptionsOf the total information experienceOf the value of content for achieving their goalsFocused on business prioritiesFor the total information experienceFor the value of content to business strategyFocused on the total information experienceMultiple information deliverablesMultiple authorsFormal and informal contentOfficial and collaborative or social contentA strategic IA is not:Focused on one kind of information deliverableFocused on information products from one kind of information developmentteam (such as just the technical product documentation team)Focused primarily on things like topic modeling, navigation hierarchies, andlabeling schemesYou may not have this role, but someone on your extended team should (such asa marketing rep)—if not, start thinking about a business case!
21IBM Total Information ExperienceIA in the organizationGroupDivisionPortfolioProductDivision DivisionPortfolio PortfolioProductCompanyTech docs Support Marketing Engineering Etc.totalinformationexperienceGroupDivisionPortfolioProductDivision DivisionPortfolio PortfolioProducttactical IA
22IBM Total Information ExperienceIA in technical communicationConcrete resultProduct-specific details+ =We deliver consistent information architecture acrossa diversity of teams and productsthrough a repeatable process that involvesapplying concrete data to abstract architectural models.Abstract model
23IBM Total Information ExperienceUse ModelCommon scenariosthat describeinteractions betweenusers and contentContent ModelBuilding blocks—how we create contentto make reusable,consistent assetsAccess ModelNavigation, wayfinding,discovery, and retrieval—how users findinformationProgressivedisclosureModel forrevealing onlythe content thatusers reallyneedNavigationpatternsConsistentstructures forcontent retrievalbased on usergoals and tasksContenttypesDefinitions andtemplates used todeliver consistent,complete contentTaxonomy &metadataClassificationschemes that helpIBM manage andreuse its content andcustomers find itTagging &labelsConsistentlabeling andtagging ofcontent, by IBMand its clientsSearchMethods toensurethat contentand structuresare optimizedfor searchInformation ModelAbstract model to whichteams add unique offeringdetails to create concrete,consistent IA+ =A closer look at IA in technical communicationWe use these architectural models:… to help us define and apply:… to deliver high-value content in an information experience that enables client success.
24IBM Total Information ExperienceIA impact: On the client experienceOur customers—and probably yours, too!—consistently request:Better retrievabilitySolution-oriented informationA seamless information experienceGood information architecture fulfills theserequests by delivering:Retrievable informationConsumable informationCohesive information based on a consistent mental model,especially across productsAppropriate information—that is, only the information ourcustomers need, where and when they need it, for their particularbusiness goals
25IBM Total Information ExperienceIA impact: On business strategy and successEffective information architecture contributes to:Product awareness, interest, and consideration—throughaligning all aspects of the information experience to ensure strong,visible, consistent messaging (does your technical information provewhat your marketing information promises?)Mindshare—through content that is ranked highly by search enginesand information experiences that generate social capital (which alsoleads to awareness, interest, and consideration—key precursors torevenue opportunities)Sales and revenue—through referrals from technical information andreuse in sales collateralCustomer satisfaction by:Reducing time-to-value and speeding time-to-successReducing total cost of ownershipReducing customer support calls
26IBM Total Information ExperienceAn information architectsynthesizes user and business requirementsand ensures that the pieces connectwithin and across the total information experienceto provide the greatest value to all clientsand support your company’s business strategy.An information architectsynthesizes user and business requirementsand ensures that the pieces connectwithin and across the total information experienceto provide the greatest value to all clientsand support your company’s business strategy.Gathers and synthesizes requirements from all relevant sourcesForms a strategy for contentArchitects the information experienceCommunications with and engages stakeholders—particularly clients—inevery phase of creating the strategyReviews progress and resolves issues to bridge strategy and developmentWhat an IA does
27IBM Total Information ExperienceWhere requirements come fromPortfoliotechnical strategyMarketingProduct managementDevelopmentInformation teamManagerCustomersCorporate strategyDivisionPortfoliobusiness strategyInformation architectInteraction designIndustry trends
28IBM Total Information ExperienceOwns and drives understanding the users, products, technology,competition, and business strategy in the context of the informationexperienceWorks with other user experience (UX) professionals, marketing,development, product and program management, service, sales, andsupport to:Research and understand business requirementsResearch and understand user requirementsProvide information-specific input to product user and task modeling (andlater use those models to define the information architecture)Drive information-specific concerns into personas and scenariosDrive information requirements into the task flow for product user interfacesDevelop the information flowValidate designs with intended usersFind the patterns inherent in data in order to make the complex clearWhat an IA does—a little more detail, part 1
29IBM Total Information ExperienceDefines the overall strategy for how information is organized, presented,and delivered based on their user’s goals and context:Information modeling, organization, and structureInformation relationships, such as navigation, linking, and retrievalInformation presentationDefinition of information deliverablesDraws a clear line between organization, presentation, and delivery asopposed to information authoring, development, and managementFulfills a formal roleWhat an IA does—a little more detail, part 2In other words, an IA isa user experience architect for information
30IBM Total Information ExperienceDrives and collaborates on design of the information strategy andarchitecture; defines priorities and strategy for Agile or incrementalimprovementsOwns architectural deliverables, such as:The information strategy for the total information experienceThe product-specific information architecture that shows how the variousinformation models are appliedArchitectural specification for actual information deliverablesThe structure, navigation schemes, and design of information deliverablesCommunicates key information to the writing team, such as:Latest strategy updates from the corporate, division, or business unit levelLatest requirements and results from customer engagementsLatest updates (and what they mean) from any corporate strategyConnections such as similar projects, prior art, related products, experts fromother areas, and so onFormal educationWhat an IA does—typical tasks, part 1
31IBM Total Information ExperienceCompletes mandatory reviews and contributes information strategy andarchitecture elements to:User experience plansDevelopment plans and design specificationsAny development process deliverables (as required by Agile, waterfall, etc.)Quality plansCustomer feedback plans, activities, and reportsPresentations by content team members to outside groupsCommon files and templates for standard filesEducates the extended product team—such as product management,development, technical sales teams, support, and others—on theinformation strategy, the information experience, and the value of contentAdvocates for the information experience on any workgroups, councils,product development teams, architecture boards, and similar groupsWhat an IA does—typical tasks, part 2
32IBM Total Information ExperienceIAs in product documentation roles are responsible for thearchitecture of all of the words that are provided as partof a product or other offering, such as:BooksOnline sources of informationProduct-embedded help systems and contentTechnical information on the product web siteJavadocReadme filesText and messages in the product user interfaceWelcome or getting started experiences in the productuser interfaceMultimedia (typically the focus, structure, and words)Learning and training deliverables, such as tutorialsWhat an IA does—scope of responsibilitiesResponsible formeans that if theinformation doesnot meet userneeds, we areheld accountableand expected towork with the restof the team toensure that theproblem is fixed
33IBM Total Information ExperienceIAs can support organizational development goals by:Identifying excellence on the information teamEnsuring that managers are aware of employees who show potential toperform the IA role (and those whose strengths are in other areas)Helping to grow and mentor potential IAs; identifying opportunities forstretch assignmentsHelping management resolve competing pressures; for example, ensuringthat managers are aware of the consequences of focusing IA resource onreactive vs. proactive pursuitsSetting expectations within and beyond the teamEnsuring that managers understand and have the opportunity to influencethe information strategy, architectural focus areas, priorities, and theimplications of decisionsAdvising managers as needed to staff IA projects appropriately based onthe skills needed to complete the tasksWhat an IA does—beyond informationHow well does this playout in your world?
34IBM Total Information ExperienceTechnical documentation roles:IA compared to managerIA compared to team lead or project managerIA compared to infrastructure leadIA compared to editorIA compared to information designerUser experience (UX) roles:IA compared to user experience architectIA compared to usability engineerIA compared to visual designerWhat an IA doesn’t do—IA vs. other rolesDepending on how yourteam is structured,the same personmight perform more than oneof these roles on some teams,but as a role, IA is not aboutthe responsibilities associatedwith these other roles
35IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: ManagerUnlike managers, IAs typically do not own or haveresponsibility for:ResourcesCareer development (though IAs may provide input)Ensuring that individual development goals support businessand technical strategy (though IAs may provide input)Enabling and empowering project leads to make the technicaland execution decisions
36IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: Project managerUnlike team leads or project managers on technical documentationteams, IAs do not own or have responsibility for:The product-specific project plan for technical documentationdeliverables (IA owes design input)Execution of the project plan for technical documentationProject managementSchedulingDefect and issue trackingIAs work best when they have a strong team lead or projectmanagement counterpart, particularly when it comes to mitigating riskand managing dependencies to ensure that the architecture is a viablesolutionIA deliverables should be project-managed and tracked like othertechnical documentation team deliverables
37IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: Infrastructure leadUnlike infrastructure leads, IAs do not own or haveresponsibility for the technical details of the documentationdelivery and implementation, including:Designing solutions for file storage and version controlCreating processes for file storage and version controlInformation builds (if your information delivery vehicles requirebuilds)Information testing (though IAs may participate in testingactivities as a method for bridging architecture andimplementation)Deployment of information
38IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: EditorUnlike technical editors, IAs do not own or haveresponsibility for:The quality of the within-page written informationEnsuring that quality is delivered (based onarchitectural and strategic direction)TerminologyIA deliverables benefit from an editorial reviewIAs and editors can benefit from collaboration onthings like labels and terminology
39IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: Technical writerKey differentiation:The IA role is about breadth and strategy—architecting an informationstrategy for a group of products, functions, and user goals.The technical writer role is about depth and execution—serving assubject matter expert in a particular area and producing detailedinformation that brings to life the information architecture and strategy.Technical writers are great sources of requirements!Unlike technical writers, IAs do not:Write deliverablesConduct technical reviews of writing deliverablesTest quality, completeness, and accuracy of written deliverablesAlthough IAs are typically working on “the next release” while writersare focused on “the current release,” IAs benefit when they provideample opportunity for writers’ input to the strategy. This helps ensurecompleteness and bridges architecture and implementation.
40IBM Total Information ExperienceComparing IAs and other information roles
41IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: UX architectInformation architects are also part of the user experience (UX) teamThe UX architect and the information architect should review andprovide input to each other’s plans, strategies, and architecturalspecificationsThe information experience, strategy, and architecture that the IAcreates is an artifact of the user experienceThe IA should partner with the UX architect on things like userpersonas and product or solution scenariosRemember, an IA is a UX architect for information
42IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: Usability engineerIAs have a focus and specific strategic and architecturaldeliverables that distinguish them from usability engineers anduser-centered design (UCD) practitionersIAs use the principles, techniques, and test methodologies ofusability and user-centered design to architect user-centeredinformation solutionsIAs may drive or conduct validation activities with intended users,either on their own or in partnership with other usability activitiesand professionals
43IBM Total Information ExperienceIA compared to other roles: Other architectsDesigncontent,presentationand deliveryof embeddeduserassistance
44IBM Total Information ExperienceThank you to these additional IBM contributors:Deirdre Longo (another original author of this material)Beth Hettich (another original authors of this material)Michelle CorbinHeather CrognaleDirk DeroosJennifer FellAnn HernandezKen HighMoira McFadden LanyiKevin McBrideLinette WilliamsAcknowledgements
45IBM Total Information ExperienceReferencesGood places for IA on the Web:Boxes and Arrows—http://www.boxesandarrows.comThe Information Architecture Institute—http://iainstitute.orgThe Society for Technical Communication—http://www.stc.orgShameless plug: Check out Intercom magazine’s regular column, “TheStrategic IA,” written by Andrea Ames and Alyson RileyResources:Hackos, JoAnn and Janice Redish. User and Task Analysis for InterfaceDesign. Wiley:1998.Hughes, Mike. Straight talk: Surviving Tough Times as a User AssistanceWriter. UX Matters. Web. 1 May 2013. http://bit.ly/ZVI0J7Hughes, Mike. Users as Decision-Makers. Intercom, February 2009.Morville, Peter and Louis Rosenfeld. (1998). Information Architecture for theWorld Wide Web. Sebastopol, CA: OReilly Media (1998).Wurman, Richard Saul. Peter Bradford, ed. Information Architects. New York:Graphis (1997).
47IBM Total Information ExperienceAgendaInformation architecture skillsDerailment factorsHigh-value assignments for strategic information architectsIdentifying and growing potential information architectsCheck out Alyson’s session!Building Effective IA Teams in Resource-Challenged TimesWednesday at 8:30 am, Hanover A/B
48IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—skill with humansUser researchConduct user and task analysisDevelop personasDevelop scenarios, use cases, and user storiesUser advocacyDevelop a deep understanding of users, their tasks,goals, and requirementsBecome their champion without becoming one of them;maintain objectivityNegotiate for user wants and needs during planning anddevelopment processesHuman factorsUnderstand and design in support of human cognitive processes ininformation interactionsValidate models and designs with intended users usinga variety of methods
49IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—skill with modelingAbility to analyze and express complex informationrelationships through modelingAbility to model the user task flowAbility to model information topicsFluency with information architecture models and theirapplication, such as:Use models (for product- and information-use scenarios)Content models (for the building blocksof consistent content)Access models (for navigation patterns,wayfinding, and progressively disclosing information)
50IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—skill with information and designDisciplined creativityAbility to synthesize competing requirements to create innovativesolutionsAbility to create in an ideal world, then collaborate and negotiate backto reality (that is, take incremental steps toward the ideal, givenresource, time, and other constraints)Organizing informationMake the complex clearUnderstand, expose, and deliver information relationshipsthrough navigation, linking, and other retrieval methodsInformation experience designInformation design skills such as minimalism, progressive disclosure,chunking, information presentation, and deliveryInteraction designCommitment to consistency and rigorous attention to detailAbility to simplify and reduce words while maintaining essentialmeaning
51IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—analytic skillsSystems thinking (see backup)Synthesize competing requirements to create innovativesolutionsAnalyze complex relationshipsand strategic ideasFind the patterns inherent in dataCritical thinkingProblem solvingRoot cause analysisTake an abstract, complex or ambiguous challenge and come upwith a concrete, real-world solution proposal
52IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—business skillsCommunication and presentation skillsNegotiation and diplomacyPolitical savvy and ability to networkSkill in understanding and making decisions based onbusiness strategyAble to build a business case and justify architecture,designs, and approaches with customer and businessimpact statements
53IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—leadership skillsVisionPassionStrategic and systems thinkingEnthusiasm for and evangelism of the strategyAbility to influence and drive direction of a large teamWilling to make a decision (and be held accountable, if necessary)Commitment to deliveryAble to commit and deliverDelegating, and delivering through others when appropriateInvestment in others and the health of the teamAble to take input from the team easilyAble to build team capacity (for example, commitment to mentoring,intentional efforts toward filling the pipeline and growing IAs, educatingthe team, and so on)Consistent but not rigid; able to consistently reinforce a message tohelp the team grow
54IBM Total Information ExperienceThe IA’s skills—other soft skillsSelf-motivation (diagnosing a problem and then relentlesslypursuing a meaningful resolution that makes a difference)Emotional intelligence and professional maturityIntelligent fearlessness (being willing to step forward butsmart about when and how)IntegrityRespect (for example, for othersideas and time)Good listening skillsAbility to give credit to others and share the spotlightFlexible, able to change, and able to accept what cannotbe changedComfort working with abstract or ambiguous projects orideas
55IBM Total Information ExperienceCharacteristics that limit IA effectivenessThe wrong personality:Views IA as a promotion strategy (for example, “I just want toget to Senior Writer”) as opposed to a career path with a specificskill set and aptitudesPower mongeringDictatorial for own political means or agendaPassive; waiting for assignments to be doled outTimid; fears speaking up, taking risks, orgracefully challenging an ideaDriven by a “don’t fix it if it’s not broken” attitudeExcessive autonomy or isolationLack of willingness to connect and collaborateViews role in a silo; can’t envision their work relative to othercontent creators around the company, or to the work of otherson the extended user experience team, if there is oneLack of tact
56IBM Total Information ExperienceCharacteristics that limit IA effectivenessThe wrong mindset:Inability to tolerate ambiguityInability or discomfort thinking in the abstract (that is, concretethinkers)Needing rules, a recipe, a cookbook, or “the right answer”Too attached to guidelines; unable to question them or see waysto advocate for legitimate changeNever following guidelines or considering constraintsTendency to get lost in the details(all trees, wrong forest)Can’t see beyond the boundaries oftheir own “book” (all trees, no forest)
57IBM Total Information ExperienceInformationstrategyHigh-value assignments for IAsReactive ProactiveLowHighNature of initiativeBusinessimpactHandlingtranslationissuesBuildingdeliverablesTactical IA(Strategic IA drives the work)Example: Developnew approach forPDF front matterInformationexperience designStrategic IA(Strategic IA does the work)Example: Develop newstrategy for integratingcommunity-generatedcontent into experience
58IBM Total Information ExperienceHow to grow new IAsIAs should be searching for others with “the IA worldview”Watch for talented individuals whose work and input to IA activitiesshows the kinds of skills, personality attributes, and mindset asdescribed on previous chartsProbe potential IA’s interestIAs collaborate with managementWork together to identify backups andsuccession plansHave potential candidates “interviewed”by an IAAsk IA for feedback about a person’s potentialin information architectureIf manager and IA agree that the person has potential…Establish a formal mentoring relationship with an experienced,practicing IAEncourage the candidate to get involved with IA activities, such as theirdivisional or corporate councils or workgroupsCollaborate with IA to identify an IA assignment (and report back tomanager on candidate’s success, issues, and so on)
59IBM Total Information ExperienceGreat assignments for “IA beginners”Design “roadmaps” to informationSee chunks, themes, and organization across a largeinformation setDesign a solution to address specific productand information requirementsResolve information across websites, informationcenter topics, and so onDesign the first-use information experienceStreamline and align many facets of the information experience, such asproduct packaging, technical product information, product websites,information roadmaps, the product “welcome experience,” and so onDesign and administer usability tests aimed at architectural issuesUnderstand human factors, human cognition, and key architecturalconcepts and deliverables, such as retrieval, navigation, roadmaps,and so onDesign a solution for error prevention, recovery, and messagesArchitect across products and the elements of the information experienceParticipate on a corporate council or workgroup, if one existsOwn a piece of or input to corporate deliverables; learn about IA issues
60IBM Total Information ExperienceThank you to these additional IBM contributors:Deirdre LongoJennifer FellAnn HernandezMichelle CorbinBeth HettichMoira McFadden LanyiAcknowledgements
61IBM Total Information ExperienceReferencesMaxwell, John. Attitude 101 and The 360-Degree Leader.Checkland, Peter. Systems Thinking, Systems Practice. 1999.Covey, Stephen. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.Goleman, Daniel. Emotional Intelligence and EmotionalIntelligence at Work.Hughes, Mike. Straight talk: Surviving Tough Times as a UserAssistance Writer. UX Matters. Web. 1 May 2013.http://bit.ly/ZVI0J7Wheeler, Benjamin, Gilda Wheeler, and Wendy Church. ItsAll Connected: A Comprehensive Guide to Global Issues andSustainable Solutions: www.facingthefuture.orgEcology, Mind, & Systems: ecomind.wikidot.com
62IBM Total Information ExperienceBackup charts for IA Skills sectionSystems thinking
63IBM Total Information ExperienceSystems thinking, part 1 from wikipedia (of course ;)The process of understanding how things, regarded assystems, influence one another within a wholeAn approach to problem solvingViewing “problems” as parts of an overall system, rather thanreacting to specific part, outcomes or events, and potentiallycontributing to further development of unintended consequencesA set of habits or practices within a framework that is based onthe belief that the component parts of a system can best beunderstood in the context of relationships with each other andwith other systems, rather than in isolationFocuses on cyclical rather than linear cause and effect
64IBM Total Information ExperienceSystems thinking, part 2 from wikipedia (of course ;)And most importantly for our purposes…Attempts to illustrate how small, catalytic eventsthat are separated by distance and timecan cause significant changes in complex systemsAcknowledges that an improvement in one areacan adversely affect another areaPromotes organizational communicationat all levelsto avoid the silo effect
65IBM Total Information ExperienceThe Iceberg Model Summarized from Its All Connected: A Comprehensive Guide to Global Issues andSustainable Solutions, Benjamin Wheeler, Gilda Wheeler and Wendy Church. www.facingthefuture.orgTrends/patterns of behavior(anticipate) What’s been happening?Systemic structure(design) What is contributing to the patterns?Events(react)What happened?IncreasingleverageMental models(transform) What keeps these patterns going?
66IBM Total Information ExperienceA systems thinking model from ecomind.wikidot.com, Ecology, Mind, & Systems
67IBM Total Information ExperienceHabits of a “systems thinker”
69IBM Total Information ExperienceAgenda: Identifying requirementsGather dataBusinessUserCurrent information experienceHistoryPoliticsAnalyze requirementsExtract requirements from dataGroup requirementsPrioritize requirementsAcknowledgementsReferencesBackup—Good stuff we won’t have time to get to
70IBM Total Information Experience1. Before you begin2. Identify sources and gather data3. A closer look at some specific inputsGather business data
71IBM Total Information ExperienceGather business dataStep 1: Before you beginMake sure that you are well-grounded and well-connected in theproduct or information experience that is your focusShow that “you belong” by building enough knowledge of the domain toask intelligent questions—at this phase of the game, you don’t have tohave the answers, but you do need to ask the right questionsBe sure you are experienced in using the current version (if it exists), itsinformation experience (IX), and the content ecosystem that supportsthat IXGather and absorb any development plans and designsFind out where thought leaders are connecting and making decisions,and get involved! Be assertive!Join any relevant product development, product management, or userexperience design teams to stay informed and advocate for contentstrategy and the value of informationNetwork extensively with the extended product team (marketing,support, test, sales, and so on)—let them see your valueFind and enlist a “sponsor” to help you get connected if this is newterritory; a mentor to help you navigate these waters is even better
72IBM Total Information ExperienceBusiness plans and priorities:Business strategyMarket intelligenceTarget customersDevelopment plans and priorities:Product, solution, or service development plansExisting functional requirements, scenarios,use cases, etc.Gather business dataStep 2: Identify sources and types“But I can’t findthis stuff!”Your company MUSThave this data somewhere.You just haven’t madethe right contact yet.Don’t give up.Keep fighting the good fight.“Why?”When you analyze datafrom development, try tofigure out why the plans arewhat they are. Where didthe requirements comefrom? How do you knowthey’re valid?
73IBM Total Information ExperienceLook for the “Why?” behind your company’s business strategy.Is your strategy a response to:Change, challenge, or opportunity in the marketplace?Change in the IT landscape?Change in financial realities or global dynamics?The answers to “Why?” will help you figure out what matters:Discern strategic priorities from point-in-time tacticsDistinguish high-value investment and innovation from low-value “traditions”Identify high-impact opportunities where information can contribute to the successof market plays, key initiatives, or customer requirementsIdentify areas where you can demonstrate that content strategy maps precisely tothe priorities of the enterprise, the business unit, and the product or portfolioIdentify areas where you can demonstrate that content is a high-value product thatcustomers wantIdentify business metrics to which you can connect content strategy outcomesGather business dataWhy you need business strategy data
74IBM Total Information ExperienceGather business dataA closer look at target customersDepending on yourindustry or the size ofyour business, yourcompany may have alayered view of its targetcustomersThe business data thatyou uncover may refer tospecific customers—”Company X” or “Client Y”Tease out which clientlayer the data address inorder to understand whatthe data show about thetarget customerTake note of the way thatspecific messages in theinformation experiencetarget specific clientlayersThe Big Cs:Executives—CEO,CIO, CTO, CFO, etc.Buyers:People who makepurchase decisionsDeployers:People (experts?) whoplan solution roll-outUsers:End users, the focusof the user experienceA layered view of “the client”What do the decision-makers care about?What do the users care about?What issues concern the people whohave to integrate the solution into thecompany environment?
75IBM Total Information Experience1. Before you begin2. Find critical client data3. Identify any known client issuesGather client data
76IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing client dataStep 1: Before you beginGet connected and build deep relationships with your user experience(UX) design team, if you have oneIf you don’t have a UX design team, it’s critical that you network withother members of the extended product team who have insights intothe nature and needs of your client. (This is a good idea in general).Examples of these kinds of people include:Marketing repsSales repsTrainers and education teamsBeta programsSupport repsCustomer advocates or account repsDevelopment team members who interact frequently with clientsYour work to gather and analyze client data depends on good dataabout the client. If you can find the data you need, then prepareyourself: you need to do the research to get the data. Prepare tobecome an agent of change!
77IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing client dataStep 2: Find critical client dataWork hard to really know your client! Find:Personas that define client/buyer/user goals, wants,needs, knowledge, motives, etc.Business scenarios that define the target customer,their organization, their business goals and pain points,the users and the tasks that those users perform with theproduct or solution—in particular, their reason for buyingyour productTask scenarios that define how users interact with theoffering to complete the tasks that contribute to solvingthe larger business goalsExamples of architectures, topologies, deployments,usage scenarios, application, or whatever to achieve aparticular business result with your productUser stories or use cases that fill in the details of eachscenario and highlight how the client will actually use yourproduct(optional) Integration scenarios that define how thetask scenarios of multiple products fit together to solve themost important or difficult problems“No really.I can’t find this stuff!”Create it.Validate it.Share it.More on this to come!“But I can’t find this stuff!”Your company likely has thisdata somewhere—it justmight look a little differentthan you’re used to. Forexample, it might look likesupport call summaries,business intelligence, ormarketing reports.
78IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing client dataStep 3: Identify any known client issuesYou may already have a collection of known client issues. (Validate anddocument them—quotes are great; videos are better.)Use your network!Ask Support: “What kinds of customer calls are you getting? Any trends?”Ask Sales: “What’s the hardest part of your job selling our product? What do yourcustomers like least about the product? How do we measure up to the products andpeople you’re competing against for the sale?”Ask your Product Management and Engineering leads: “What kinds of customer issuesare you hearing about most? What keeps you up at night?”Ask your Marketing representatives: “Are your market messages working as you hadhoped? What kind of feedback are you getting? What ideas are taking hold?”Mine known client issues for data such as:How the product compares to other productsThe success and quality of the product once it’s in real customer handsHow content contributes to the success and quality of the productOpportunities for improvements in the information experience to contribute toimprovements in the total offering or product user experienceRequirements for content, both strategic and low-hanging fruit
79IBM Total Information Experience1. Before you begin2. Analyze content3. Analyze “packaging”4. Analyze people5. Analyze processesGather data about today’s information experience
80IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 1: Before you begin, part 1To learn about the information experience as a whole, you need to build andleverage a network that includes subject matter experts from every facet andentity that contributes to the information experience—you need their expertiseboth to gather and interpret dataWherever possible, use metrics to distinguish opinion from fact—but don’t try tointerpret the data you collect without others’ insights and experienceLike any system, the informationexperience is comprised ofinterdependent elementsWhile it’s tempting to focus solely onthe content facet, you must see theentire systemTo gain a nuanced and trueunderstanding of how the informationexperience works (and where you’vegot work to do), you need to analyzeeach element and how the systemfunctions as a whole
81IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 1: Before you begin, part 2Your systems thinking skillsare really getting a workout!Another system impacts theinformation expeirence: theproduct lifecycleWhen assessing the today-state information experience,view it as theclient/buyer/user sees it: aninterconnected series ofproduct interactions facilitatedby contentInterpret the effectiveness ofthe information experience byasking:How well does the experiencefunction in and between eachphase of the product lifecycle?A generalized view ofIBM’s product lifecycle
82IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 2: Analyze content, part 1Assess content health:How well does the content meetclient/buyer/user needs?Go back to your client data—are thehigh-priority goals, scenarios, andtasks thoroughly covered?Can you easily see the valuepropositions for the product in thecontent ecosystem?Is the content client-centered, task-focused, and high-value?How thoroughly does the content cover the full product lifecycle?Are there gaps or disconnects between the phases of the product lifecycle?Are there content redundancies or inconsistencies that could derail a client?Does the content enable client success in the typical tasks within each phase?How well does the content address typical client content needs?How well does the current information experience address product content suchas up-and-running, getting started, preventing or recovering from errors, and soon?Does the information experience include embedded assistance where appropriate?
83IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 2: Analyze content, part 2Continued…How well does the content address typical information-seeking behaviors?Starting: identifying relevant sources of interest.Chaining: following and connecting new leads found in an initial content source.Browsing: scanning contents of identified sources for subject affinity.Monitoring: staying informed about developments in a particular subject area.Differentiating: filtering and assessing content sources for usefulness.Extracting: working through a source to find content of interest.How well does the content contribute to a delightful client experience?Is the information experience elegant in its presentation, visual design, etc.?Are there opportunities to simplify or innovate?Are there opportunities to improve the information experience, such as:Improvements to the product that result in a need for less content?Tighter integration between interaction (UI) and information?Simplified information architecture—fewer sources, fewer pages, designed paths?
84IBM Total Information ExperienceHow do you measure high value content? That depends!If your goal is to convince others that high value content matters, look at:How does my content contribute to clients purchase decisions? Is there click-throughdata and contributions to conversions on marketing pages that I can reference?How does my content contribute to clients perceptions of product quality? Whats therelationship between quality problems in my content and known quality problems withthe product?How does my content contribute to client satisfaction with our products?How does my content contribute to the product visibility (and thus the sales cycle andrevenue streams) in the marketplace? What kind of social capital is being generatedaround my content? Whos active, and how active are they? How frequently and withwhat impact am I engaging with customers through my content? What are they talkingabout—nits, or requirements for content or broader product strategy? Does the sum ofthe social conversation support my company’s business strategy and advance theeminence of our brand?If your goal is to assess the effectiveness of your content and experience, look at:Heuristic evaluations (we just talked about this)Traditional web statisticsAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 2: Analyze content, part 3We’ll talk more aboutbusiness metrics later on—let’s look at web stats now…
85IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 2: Analyze content, part 4Interpret current web statistics to understand how clients:Search for the information—whether the content is optimized for search engines(SEO); what click-through and bounce rates show about user paths and successEnter the experience—whether designed entry points are effectiveThink about the information space—what search terms they enter, what topics theypick as they browse found contentNavigate the information space—whether user paths make sense relative to yourunderstanding of their business goals and tasksUse the information—how actual usage patterns differ from designed or predictedusage patterns; how much time they spend on certain pages; whether they’reaccessing content on mobile devices, and so onValue the information—any social interaction to consider?Web stats give us hints at the core issues:Is the information experience performing in the ways that Iexpect it to, based on user actions? Is it effective?Is my content high-value, or just highly-findable?
86IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 3: Analyze “packaging”Consider “packaging” aspects of the ecosystem:Is the presentation of content effective and predictable across the ecosystem? Doesthe visual design of content support the branding strategy for the product?Where and how is your content delivered to the client? Lots of places? One place? Dothe delivery vehicles integrate well with each other? Is the content easily accessiblefrom the client’s context or point of need?How findable is your content across delivery vehicles? Are the signposts for wayfindingvisible, usable, and predictable across the ecosystem? Is your content progressivelydisclosed in support of clients’ need for increasing depth or breadth of content?In the information experience, severalmediators come between theclient/buyer/user and the content.We call these mediators “packaging”:Presentation—the visual designof the contentDelivery—the vehicle used topublish the content for clientaccessNavigation—the various ways inwhich the user finds the content
87IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing today’s information experienceStep 3: Analyze peopleWho are the human players?Internal playersProfessional content producersMarketing teamSales enablement content teamEducation teamsBeta programs teamsSupport teamsProduct documentation teamsNon-professional content producersSubject matter expertsClient-facing personnelExternal playersBusiness partnersClients, with all their social networking tools and capabilitiesWhat unique value does each player contribute to the informationexperience?Look for:Strengths—these are your assets!Mission overlap—these are your pitfalls!Ways to maximize organizationalcapabilities—this is your vision!
88IBM Total Information Experience1. Before you begin2. Do a little archaeology3. Assess the treasure you findGather historical data
89IBM Total Information ExperienceGather historical dataStep 1: Before you beginFind people who represent multiple perspectivesYour view of history depends on who you areGet multiple views to triangulate upon “truth”Go in with humilityYou may have the latest tools, techniques, and technology, but these alone will notguarantee your successStart from the assumption that people have good motives and are doing their bestDig deep, and wear your systems-thinking hatPay attention to organizational dynamics, significant relationships, cause-and-effect,and systemic issuesLook past obvious issues—try to understand pressures, motives, and circumstancesDon’t let it drag you downLearn from the past—but don’t believe everything you hear“History is bunk.” –Henry Ford“Those unable tocatalog the past aredoomed to repeat it.”—Lemony Snicket
90IBM Total Information ExperienceGather historical dataStep 2: Do a little archaeology on the content ecosystem1. Who was here before?2. What did they do?3. Why did they do it?4. What worked well?5. What didn’t work so well?6. What challenges did they encounter?7. What did they learn?
91IBM Total Information ExperienceGather historical dataStep 3: Assess the archaeological treasure you findWhat did you learn?Any lessons from history that canhelp you form a strategy?Did develop a better appreciation forwhy things are the way they are?What failures from the past can youturn into future opportunities?Use your new historical perspectiveShow respect for—win the respect of—those who have been there beforeIdentify potential roadblocks—politics, resources, schedules, skills, peopleIdentify potential heroes and pre-heroes (read: villains that you haven’twon over yet)Go in fore-warned and fore-armedPrepare effective messages to counter arguments that history suggests youare likely to encounter
92IBM Total Information Experience1. Before you begin2. Consider political factors that may influenceyour success3. Manage stakeholdersGather data about the political landscape
93IBM Total Information ExperienceGather data about the political landscapeStep 1: Before you begin—get your head in the gameIf you’re not there already, content strategy requires you to step into the worldof politicsThink of it as a game—moving pieces on a boardYou can’t touch the pieces directly to move them where you want themYou have to inspire them to moveYou inspire them by figuring out what they care about, and speaking to thatIt doesn’t have to be an evil gameLook for win-win alliances and opportunitiesDiscover and play to people’s strengthsEnjoy finding kindred spirits in the game—don’t get bogged down by pieces on theboard that refuse to moveEnjoy the wins—be sure to share the rewardsLearn from the losses—keep your eye on the end game on not on emotional setbacksMake smart for the greater good—but remember who you are
94IBM Total Information ExperienceGather data about the political landscapeStep 2: Consider political factors that influence success1. Do I have the right big picture view of what myorganization cares about?Executives?Visionaries?Management?The proletariat? (political metaphor, you know)2. Where are there opportunities for me to connect mystrategy to initiatives in which the organization isalready investing?What problems does my strategy help solve?What opportunities does my strategy help maximize?Keep asking:What are my options?Where are my opportunities?3. Whose agendas do I need to understand to be successful?Which influencers can help me? What are their agendas?Which influencers could block me? What are their agendas?4. Put it all together—which path forward seems most promising? Where do youneed to campaign? Where do you need to gain allies?
95IBM Total Information ExperienceAnalyzing the political landscapeStep 3: Manage your stakeholdersYour best political asset—your stakeholders!A rigorous stakeholder management process will help you takerigorous advantage of this key assetThink through the ways that your stakeholders can help you—start by identifying and analyzing:Their status relative to your project—advocate, supporter, neutral,critic, blockerTheir top interests and hot issuesTheir key performance indicators (KPIs) and metricsThe level of support you desire from themThe role on your project that you desire for themThe actions that you want them to take (and their priority)The messages that you need to craft for them to enable theoutcome you wantThe actions and communication that you need to make happenwith each stakeholder to achieve your desired outcomeKeep your stakeholder management plan current“Stakeholdermanagement iscritical to thesuccess of everyproject in everyorganization … Byengaging the rightpeople in the rightway in your project,you can make a bigdifference to itssuccess...and to your career.”—Rachel ThompsonSource and freestakeholdermanagementworksheet here:Thompson, Rachel.StakeholderManagement:PlanningStakeholderCommunication.MindTools. Web.12 April 2013.http://bit.ly/8UnUdj
96IBM Total Information Experience1. Before you begin2. Extract requirements from the business, user,historical, and political data you collected3. Articulate requirements effectively4. Group requirements5. Prioritize requirementsIdentify requirements
97IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 1: Before you begin—procedural overviewdetermine the importance of individual requirementsto user success — to product success — to business successall the data you collectedbecome requirementsbusiness priorities, market plays, competitive analysis, target customers[why your company produced the product]client goals, tasks, work context, wants, needs, and motives[why clients purchase the product in the first place]what the business needs and values (and doesn’t)what the client needs and values (and don’t)that you prioritize to identify strategic focus areas
98IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 2: Extract requirements from dataThink deeply about what the data you collected shows you—mine thedata for:Themes or systemic issuesProblemsOpportunitiesReflect on history and the current stateDon’t think about the future just yetConsider:What is the want or need?Who wants or needs it?Why do they want or need it?How might the want or need be addressed? (Caution: don’t get too farinto implementation details at this stage.)Each need is a requirement!
99IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 3: Articulate requirements effectivelyWrite requirements as simply as possible:Pragmatic Marketing recommends (and we like)this approach:[Persona] has [problem] with [frequency].[Alyson and Andrea] have [a hard time focusing onthe task at hand when they are having fun makingcharts for LavaCon] [pretty much all the time].Pragmatic Marketing also says that the bestrequirements are SMART:Specific—precisely what to achieveMeasurable—all stakeholders can determine if theobjectives are being metAchievable—attainable objectivesRealistic—doable with available resourcesTime-bound—when the desired results must be achievedPragmaticMarketing’s5 Pitfalls ofRequirementWriting1. Not knowing theaudience2. Ambiguity3. Squeezing asolution into theproblem4. Not making formfollow function5. Not having aholistic approachwho what why where when howX
100IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 4: Group requirementsGroup requirements into categories tomake prioritizing them a little easierPick the group that makes the most sensefor your work—here are some examples:By area of impact (from these charts):Requirements to fulfill client/buyer/user wants and needsRequirements to support business strategy and objectives (and all thatentails)Requirements that address historical issuesRequirements that address issues in the political landscapeBy type (suggested by Pragmatic Marketing):Functional requirements—capabilities neededPerformance requirements—capacity, speed, ease-of-use, etc.Constraint requirements—conditions that limit the strategy or designInterface requirements—interactions neededSecurity requirements—such as client privacy or government mandateCard sort image thanks to UX Matters
101IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 5: Prioritize requirements, part 1Prioritizing requirements is an art—but we can follow a repeatable process toensure rigor and high-quality outcomes:1. Assign each requirement a low, medium, or high priority according to its:Value to the clientHelps achieve the business goal for which the product was purchased in the firstplace (speeds time-to-value)Helps complete a goal or task (speeds time-to-success)Solves a problem—better yet, prevents a problem (increases customer satisfaction)Improves user experience (increases customer satisfaction)Simplifies; delights (increases customer loyalty)Value to business strategyContributes to product visibility and success in the marketplaceContributes to brand recognition and mindshareValue to developmentSupports product functionality or capabilitiesSaves resources (political note: content band-aids don’t save money long-term!)
102IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 5: Prioritize requirements, part 2…continued:2. Identify the “must-do” items, and mark them high priority. Caution:Think critically about those must-do items! Why are they must-do? Askyourself:Do these requirements support user needs or business strategy? Or are they“because we’ve always done it this way” requirements? Or “because I think it shouldbe like this” requirements?Do the requirements yield high-value content that maps to clients’ real-world businessgoals? Can you prove it? Or are they “because we must have one help topic per userinterface panel” kinds of requirements?Is it because “development told me to” or “marketing insisted?” That doesn’tnecessarily mean the requirement is really a high priority one. What does youranalysis tell you?3. Ensure that requirements high in value to your clients, your productstrategy, and your overarching business strategy are marked higher inpriority than those items that are only valuable to one or two of thoseareas.4. Group items by priority, from high to low.
103IBM Total Information ExperienceIdentify requirementsStep 5: Prioritize requirements, part 3…continued:5. Rank high-priority items by doability:Identify any low-hanging fruit (easy or quick to address).Do you have the necessary time, skill, and technology resources?Does the team have the resources to implement the solution?6. Do the same for medium priority items.7. Hang on to the low-priority items for now; depending on time and resources, youmay be able to incorporate them into your information strategy and architecture.8. Share and validate your focus area prioritization with stakeholders:Start at home first: get feedback from your content team. Use this time to:Help the team think strategically about the futureCollaborate with management about resource requirements and the best ways todeploy skills strategically against high-priority workHelp your executive management chain think about the business value of contentthrough discussions of your focus items and priorities.Then get feedback from your extended offering team and your users.
104IBM Total Information ExperienceReferencesAmes, Andrea and Alyson Riley. Strategic information architecture: The informationuser experience. Intercom (October 2012). 28-32.Ellerby, Lindsay. Analysis, plus synthesis: Turning data into insights. UX Matters (27April 2009). Web. 12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/C2vQ6Ellis, David. (1989). A behavioural model for information retrieval system design.Journal of information science, 15 (4/5): 237-247.Johnson, Steve. Writing the market requirements document. Pragmatic Marketing.Web. 12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/SiTrF2Kalbach, James. “Designing for Information Foragers: A Behavioral Model forInformation Seeking on the World Wide Web.” Internetworking, Internet TechnicalGroup newsletter. Web. 20 April 2013. http://bit.ly/11Ryc15Kalbach, James and Aaron Gustafson. Designing Web Navigation: Optimizing the UserExperience. Cambridge: MA: O’Reilly Media, 2007.Plowman, Kerry J. Five pitfalls of requirement writing. Pragmatic Marketing. Web.12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/RWKbUYSehlhorst, Scott. Writing good requirements—the big ten rules. Tyner Blain blog.Web. 12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/13Y7t0Thompson, Rachel. Stakeholder management: Planning stakeholder communication.MindTools. Web. 12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/8UnUdj
105IBM Total Information ExperienceBackup charts for IA Requirements sectionGood stuff we won’t have time to get to(but that might be helpful to you)
106IBM Total Information ExperienceYour company’s business strategy might be layered:Enterprise-level strategyBusiness unit strategies that support the enterprise strategicintent and focus itemsProduct or portfolio strategy that delivers on business unit andenterprise strategyMine business strategy data to discover:Customer prioritiesCompany prioritiesInvestment areas for future growthPlan for balancing competing opportunities and focus areasRoadmap for growthA closer look at business strategy
107IBM Total Information ExperienceA closer look at market intelligenceMarket research happens at every layer of an enterpriseFind channels into each layer and investigate things like:Sales support resourcesCustomer referencesMarket insights and intelligenceFind the people who are the keepers of this information—build yournetworkAsk colleagues in product management, user experience design, marketing,development, sales, etc.Do your own sleuthing! See what’s going on in industry literature and blogs, customergroups and social mediaUse market intelligence data to determine:What’s important to our customersWhat problems our customers are trying to solveWhat our competitors are doing and how you measure up (and does this vary by thingslike geographic location or industry?)
108IBM Total Information ExperienceMining client dataInformation architects mine client data todetermine:The identity of the target clientsThe business goals for which clientspurchase the product, solution, serviceor whatever in the first placeThe tasks that clients must do toachieve their goalsThe tasks that clients have to do as aresult of product or solution designConnections to other products, solutionsor informationCurrent and potential problem areasConnect dots & synthesize:Client business goals+Client problems+Business strategy=A great way to identifyopportunities wherehigh-value contentcan make a differencethat matters to business!!
109IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat the information experience is formaterialobjects, actions—owned, controlled, repeatablecommodities made of scarce resourcesimmaterialknowledge, competencies, emotions—not owned, boxed, or controlledavailable in abundance*Adapted from Miikka Leiononen’s “Melt,” here*Effective content ecosystemsgenerate profit for the businessand value for the client:In the knowledge economy,profit is created by “stuff”but value is created by content:new economyold economyCompany-generatedinformation
111IBM Total Information ExperienceBefore you begin—rethinking metricsPlan to sell to two different audiencesMap stakeholders to metricsMap content metrics to stakeholder metricsSet metrics-based goalsPlan for a closed-loop processPlan for story-tellingAgenda: Defining success—metrics for IAs
112IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 1: Before you begin—rethink metrics, part 1Problem: Metrics have gotten a bad rapNumbers can be hard for word peopleThe right numbers are hard for everyoneGetting metrics to work for you requires a significant shift in thinkingSolution: Rethink metricsMetrics are another form of audience analysis (who cares about what?)Metrics are another form of usability testing (what works for whom?)Motivation for change: Metrics are a powerful tool for getting what youwant (and making sure you want the right things)Metrics transform opinion into factMetrics remove emotion from analysisStrategize with metrics: Use metrics at every phaseBeginning: identify opportunity, prove the strategy is rightMiddle: show incremental progress, course-correctEnd: prove value and earn investment for the future
113IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 1: Before you begin—rethink metrics, part 2A strategist is (among other things) a story-teller:Define the right visionTell a compelling, true story that inspires people to buy inWhat makes a story true? Facts—things you can prove.What makes a story compelling? It speaks to what matters most.What matters most? Depends on your audience. Duh, right?Prove the value of information architecture and content with metricsValue is in the eye of the beholder.Who’s your “beholder?” Understand who your beholders actually are—thatis, the real decision-makers and influencers in your world. (Manage yourstakeholders!)Use metrics that target actual decision-makers.Your actual decision-makers are probably business people—executives,managers, and others who hold the purse-strings.Figure out what your audience values—their metrics for success.
114IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 1: Before you begin—rethink metrics, part 3So what audience are we speaking to when we talk about things like this?Site visitorsPage hitsVisitor locationMost popular pagesLeast popular pagesBounce rateTime spent on pageReferrals and referrersSearch termsEtc.
115IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 2: Defining success for different audiencesAudience 1: Business peopleUnless you can make a direct connection between your IA metrics and themetrics that drive business, you are telling the wrong story for thisaudience.You need this audience! The business community funds us. We have tosell our vision to them, with a metrics story that resonates with them.We must learn to speak “business”—that is, prove the value of contentand the information experience using metrics that matter to business.Audience 2: Content peopleTypically many kinds of content people will help implement an informationarchitecture—your work may span departments and business units.Content people tend to reflect the values of their leadership and businessunit in which they’re located.This means that even kindred spirits—other content people—can havewidely different goals and metrics.Your job is to define common ground by speaking to what matters most tothis audience, too.
116IBM Total Information ExperienceSelling information architecture to a business audienceThe metrics that we use to build effectivecontent strategies don’t resonate with mostexecutives, managers, and finance people.Sometimes we “talk to ourselves”—that is,use metrics that resonate with contentpeople, not the actual people we need tosupport our strategy.“Page hits” resonate with us. “Sales leads”resonates with business.You cannot directly connect things like pagehits and bounce rates to core businessmetrics.You need an informational professional’sintuition to know how content supportsbusiness metrics—most business peopledon’t have that intuition.The business audience funds us. We have tosell our vision and prove our value to them,with a metrics story that speaks to whatthey care about most.Examplebusiness metrics:Revenue streamsSales leadsCost per leadCustomer satisfactionCustomer loyaltyReturn on investment (ROI)Time to valueMarket shareMindshare
117IBM Total Information ExperienceProving the business value of content—IBM exampleShamelessad:Watch for theMay issue ofSTC’s Intercommagazine for anew article thatwe wrote onproving thebusiness valueof content.At IBM, we’re learning to tell a better story for a business audienceWe conducted a survey from 2010-2012 with clients and prospectiveclients about the value of content—here’s the hot-off-the-press data:
118IBM Total Information ExperienceSelling content strategy to a content audienceAnalyze each team that contributes to your information architectureIn what business unit are they located?Who are their executives, sponsors, and stakeholders?Who “grades them” on their performance?Who funds them?What matters to them?How do they measure their progress or results?What are they doing well (both in your analysis and theirs)?Where can they improve (both in your analysis and theirs)?Identify areas of similarity and differenceWhere do their goals align with yours? build bridges!Where do their goals conflict with yours? build business cases!Use metrics to craft a story that:Shows problems and opportunities that the content team cares aboutMaps in key areas to their goals for contentDiverges from their current goals in ways that would increase their value to sponsorsand stakeholders
119IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 3: Map stakeholders to metricsRemember the stakeholder managementplan? Here’s another place where it providesvalue.Be highly intentional about making sure thatyour metrics plan includes data that map tothe things your key stakeholders care about.This mapping activity will help you:Validate your strategy—does your work alignwith mission-critical organizational objectives?Prepare persuasive communications for yourkey decision-makers—do you have theframework for a strong story to connect inmeaningful ways with your variousstakeholders?
120IBM Total Information ExperienceMetrics for an audience of business peopleUse the research you didduring the today-stateanalysis phaseTarget the key decisions-makers—those who hold thepurse-stringsIdentify what the keybusiness decision-makerscare aboutUse language that resonateswith that business audienceRemember: unless you cantie a particular goal or resultto a measurement that thestakeholder cares about, thatresult ultimately doesn’tmatterDevelopment costsMarket shareLines of codeComplianceQuality and test resultsDevelopmentExecutiveCall volumeCall lengthCustomer satisfactionTicket deflectionSupportExecutiveViable leadsSales growthProduct performanceSalesExecutiveROICost per leadCampaign performanceConversion metricsMarketingExecutiveExample metricsStakeholder
121IBM Total Information ExperienceMetrics for an audience of content peopleMap thepeople whodelivercontent tothe metricsthey careaboutRememberthat eachcontent teamhas their owndecision-makers who:Approve theirgoalsDeterminetheir fundingDeterminetheir futuresProductdocumentation teamDevelopers whopublish whitepapersand case studiesProduct communityforums and wikisWeb support teamCall center teamSales enablementEducation & trainingBeta programsWeb teamSocial teamEvent teamExample associatedcontent teamsDev costMarket shareLines of codeComplianceQuality and testCall volumeCall lengthCustomer sat.TicketdeflectionViable leadsSales growthProductperformanceROICost per leadCampaignperformanceConversionmetricsExamplemetricsLines of text, number ofpages, etc.Cost per unit producedWeb trafficNumber of forumparticipantsAmount of webinformation producedNumber of calls reducedTime of calls reducedCost per unit producedProofs of Concept (PoCs)to saleNumber of classesBeta programparticipantsCost per unit producedWeb trafficClick-throughsLikes and sharesConversionsCollateral distributedCost per unit producedExamplecontent metricsDevelopmentExecutiveSupportExecutiveSalesExecutiveMarketingExecutiveStakeholder
122IBM Total Information ExperienceMetrics that reflect client valuesWhat are your clients’ metrics?Do your clients value the same things that your business values?How do you know?Can you prove it?Key idea: think of yourself as a partner in your clients’ success (this isone of IBM’s core leadership competencies).Leverage network relationships with client-facing personnel. (Better yet,develop those relationships yourself.) Use those relationships todiscover, prioritize, and validate client concerns. Here’s a simple list toget you started:ROITime-to-successTime-to-valueEase of useEase of maintenance and supportFunctional priorities
123IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 4: Map content metrics to stakeholder metricsTie your IA metrics to the metrics that matter most to your stakeholdersso you can tell a story that inspires the outcomes you want.This means researching how content influences the metrics that aremost important to the specific people you need for success.Start your research with these hints:direct link to mindshareHow does content shape clients’perceptions of your company?direct link to ROIHow does content influencecustomer satisfaction?direct link to customer loyaltyHow does content impactproduct quality?direct link to the revenue streamHow does content drivepurchase decisions?direct link to customer valueHow does content speed usersuccess and time-to-value?
124IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 5: Set metrics-based goalsSo what are the goals for your information architecture? Express those goals inthe form of business metrics and content metrics. Some examples:Create high quality, highlyusable content delivered in anelegant informationexperience.Sentiment—nature ofsocial dialogue, etc.Direct feedbackPerceptions ofcompany (mindshare)Create high value contentthat speeds customer time tosuccess.Web trafficDirect feedbackRatingsShares (social)Customer satisfaction(ROI)Contribute to product qualitythrough by simplifying theamount of content in the userexperience.Reach—visits, etc.Engagement—referrals,etc.Product quality(customer loyalty)Contribute to revenue streamthrough referrals fromtechnical content that becomesales leads.Reach—visits, etc.Engagement—referrals,etc.Purchase decisions(revenue)Sample content goalsSample IA metricsBusiness metrics
125IBM Total Information ExperienceStep 6: Plan for a closed-loop processClosed loop: end up at the beginning!Start with metrics—use at project outset to:Identify problems and opportunitiesDefine the visionProve that the vision is rightContinue with metrics—use during implementation to:Measure the success of your progress in small incrementsStay on-target through implementationDetermine when it’s time to course-correct (before change gets expensive)Keep your sponsors and stakeholders engaged throughout the long haulEnsure that you remain connected to the broader goals and metrics of the surroundingbusinessEnsure that you stay responsive and adapt to changeEnd with metrics—use at project conclusion to:Prove the business value of cultivating an effective content ecosystemProve the business value of your work—enhance your credibility and careerEncourage future investment in the content ecosystem
126IBM Total Information ExperienceWhat your metrics give you:The “black and white” part of your strategyThe facts that prove your strategy is a good oneAn argument that speaks to the analytical mindWhat your metrics don’t give you:A guaranteed successful “sell” to your stakeholdersA vision that inspires people to believeA story that speaks to the emotional heartThink through the content, tactics, and rhetorical devices that will sellyour visionAristotle had it right:Ethos—your credibility as a speaker (professionalism; authority)Logos—the logic of your argument; the clarity of your message and evidence,using either inductive (bottom-up) or deductive (top-down) reasoningPathos—an emotional appeal, vivid storytelling, creative envisioningThe point? Be sure that your metrics help you gather all the data youneed to tell an ethos—logos—pathos storyStep 7: Plan for story-tellingEXPERT
127IBM Total Information ExperienceReferencesBhapkar, Neil. 8 KPIs Your Content Marketing MeasurementsShould Include. Content Marketing Institute. Web. 12 April 2013.http://bit.ly/Wnb7CyKlipfolio. The KPI Dashboard—Evolved. Web. 12 April 2013.http://bit.ly/LhzeL9Muldoon, Pamela. 4 metrics every content marketer needs tomeasure: Interview with Jay Baer. Content Marketing Institute.Web. 12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/X8IvMJThompson, Rachel. Stakeholder management: Planning stakeholdercommunication. MindTools. Web. 12 April 2013. http://bit.ly/8UnUdj
129IBM Total Information ExperienceAgenda: Scenario-driven information architectureWho cares about scenarios?Introduction to scenariosThe scenario processUsing existing scenariosCreating new scenariosBridging architecture and implementationAcknowledgementsReferencesBackup—Good stuff we won’t have time to get toCase studiesA few examples
130IBM Total Information ExperienceWho cares about scenarios?Current economic pressures have raised the stakes:We need to recession-proof our jobs and careersWe must demonstrate business-critical value-addWe must use scarce resources strategically and with high impactScenario-driven information architecture provides a method to:Improve product and information usabilityHelp us better understand our users and what they doHelp us make informed design decisionsHelp us design the information experience according to how customerswill use the productAlign the user experience for the whole productImprove information development team efficiency and effectivenessEliminate low-value content (and corresponding work)Deliver high-value content that solves client business problems
131IBM Total Information ExperienceIntroduction to scenarios
132IBM Total Information ExperienceIntroduction: OverviewScenarios are stories withpeople performing tasks to achieve goals
133IBM Total Information ExperienceUsefulRealisticCompleteGoal-orientedEnd-to-endSpecificCoordinatedReusableAccurateIntroduction: Characteristics of a good scenario
134IBM Total Information ExperienceBusiness scenario—tells the customer business storyThe target customerTheir organization and stakeholdersTheir business goals and pain pointsThe users and the high priority tasks that they perform with our productsTask scenario—tells the hands-on user’s storyThe high-level task flowHow users interact with our products to complete the tasks thatcontribute to solving the larger business goalsIntegration scenario—tells the end-to-end integration storyHow the task scenarios of multiple products fit togetherHow the task scenarios of multiple products span multiple users typesHow the task scenarios of multiple products solve the mostimportant/difficult problemsIntroduction: Scenarios with different scopes
135IBM Total Information ExperienceScenarios don’t belong everywhere,but should affect almost everything.Use scenarios internally to influence content design and developmentScenarios inform your design decisions and informationWhen used like this, readers don’t ever see the actual scenariosExternalize scenarios to customers, when appropriate, to help themunderstand complex solutions or new paradigmsDescribe solution deployments in the form of a story withtechnically rich detailWhen used like this, readers walk through the scenarioIntroduction: Scenario-driven IA
136IBM Total Information ExperienceThe scenario process
137IBM Total Information ExperienceproductteamusersDefine allrelevant usersBAOverview: The scenario-driven IA processFind existingproduct scenarioEvaluate existingproduct scenarioAdapt existingproduct scenarioForm multi-Disciplinary teamGather data fornew scenario—or—Validate theproduct scenarioDevelop thenarrativeDefine producttask flowsAdd informationuse to scenarioCreate informationtask model
138IBM Total Information ExperiencePath AGood scenarios might already have been created foryour content or product areaInvestigate with your product team:User experience (UX) architectUser interface (UI) or interaction designerUsability practitionerIf you don’t have any of the above, consult with:Engineering leadsProduct managementSalesMarketingTechnical educationSupportExisting scenarios, step 1: Find a scenario
139IBM Total Information ExperienceThe scenario needs to describe your users performing the tasks theyneed to do to achieve their goals/business objectives.Does it address your users—all of them, with the level of detailthat you need?Does it address your users’ goals and tasks—all of them, includingthose that might take place before and after product usage?Does the scenario accurately portray the user’s environment?If you don’t know how to answer these questions, talk with a userexperience architect or with people on your extended product team whohave experience with customers. Cultivate relationships with marketing,support, and sales in particular.Existing scenarios, step 2: Evaluate
140IBM Total Information ExperienceIf an existing scenario doesn’t answer all yourquestions, you need to adapt or expand it until itserves your purposes.At this point, your path will start to look like the pathfor Option B, creating a new scenario….Existing scenarios, step 3: AdaptPath B
141IBM Total Information ExperiencePath BForm a multidisciplinary team with representatives from:Technical communicationUser experience (UX) and user interface (UI) or interaction designMarketingEngineeringSalesService and supportCoordinate with others so the scenarios you create will work well with scenariosfrom other teams or product areas.Work directly with users.Note: If you can’t work with users, find a “surrogate” in your company.Define your role on the team:In some cases, all you will have to do is get the ball rolling and thenshepherd/participate in the process.In some cases, you may have to play a more active role.New scenario, step 1: Form team
142IBM Total Information ExperienceGather the data that provide the foundation for your scenario:Customer stakeholders and users, their business challenges, the costs ofthose challenges, and goals (you will do this in a lot of detail, as well, butfor now, gain a general understanding)The value to customers that the product provides for their challengesThe value of the solution to your company (it’s helpful to have theproduct/portfolio business and technical strategies available)Your company’s stakeholders, including goals, pain points, and costsA prioritized list of target user tasksThe goals for the user experience, including success metricsDocument this information—some within the scenario definition andsome as background/reference material.Use your multidisciplinary team to ensure that you have targeted theright scope and context for your scenario.New scenario, step 2: Gather data
143IBM Total Information ExperienceDefine user roles: Who should the users be? Sources for thisinformation include:Design specifications from product engineeringUser experience documentsResearch: Who are the actual users? Sources of this informationinclude:Market intelligenceYour own research with usersDefine user responsibilities: What tasks do the users need toperform? What business problems are they tyring to solve?Define user skills: What must users know so that they cansuccessfully perform tasks?Identify contextual and environmental factors that influence thescenario.New scenario, step 2: Define users
144IBM Total Information Experience1. Document the scenario as a story.Include:ActorsTasksMotivationsInformation flow2. Create a use case diagramthat depicts the flows anddependencies that you identify.3. Develop examples that makeeach use case concrete andtestable.4. If you lack information,make an assumption anddocument it. (You validate yourassumptions later in the process.)New scenario, step 3: Develop narrative
145IBM Total Information Experience1. List the tasks that support usersaccomplishing the goals identifiedin the scenario.2. Organize the tasks into a setof task flows.3. Build a model of the tasks:What are the tasks?What is the sequence in whichthe user performs the tasks?What are the high-level tasks?What are the low-level tasks?Step 1 Step 2New scenario, step 4: Create product task flow