by Kim Temples | Comments: 0

Who, how, where, will, when? Kim Temples gives you 5 points to consider when you assign user orientated meta-data structures to your assets.

When you start to put a structure to your assets you’ll be presented with many options as to how to do this. We’ve distilled down our experience of helping clients with building metadata tagged asset structures into 5 questions that you should ask before, during and after implementing your asset structure.

1. Who are they? It might seem like an obvious starting point but you’d be surprised how quickly this is forgotten when assigning a meta-data structure to assets. This should be asked right at the start and referenced throughout the exercise. Consider all parties, inside users as well as outside.  They might use different terminology so you need to consider how to accommodate this in the metadata.

2. How will they? To you, the structure and navigation path might seem obvious. To your user, it might not seem so clear. Some of our clients run ‘survey on search’ exercises – asking questions like how their users find assets or what do they search for? By communicating with your user base you can often get an insight on how they navigate through the system and the awareness of assets throughout.

3. Where are they? Are they internal to the company (Inside looking out) or are they external (Outside looking in). Another of the important things to consider with assigning metadata to your assets is to think about the different user groups and the terminology they use.  One group may call something entirely different than another.   You’ve asked some question like who is my end user or how do they search for collateral? Now look at how they sit in relation to the company structure. For example the internal structure used by your teams to process and produce your assets may not fit the way an external user would browse. As you assign Metadata the guiding structure through which the collateral is placed must be instinctively navigable. Remember there should be many routes.

4. Will this make sense to someone outside your team? Accept there is no single structure that is correct. Allow your users to navigate to the point their own way. Give them multiple route choices and accept no one way is right. As a rule of thumb there should at least 3 different ways to navigate to the same asset.

5. When to Curate your assets? Pull regular reports and analyse the tags used by Assets. Listen to feedback from your user community. The process of how you assign your tags should be agreed upon and controlled by a small number of users. Too many and the navigation can easily become diluted. Try to keep the tagging pinned to real structure that can be referenced.  Assets with low order rates should have their tags reviewed on a regular basis.

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