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How To Build A Hot Enterprise Taxonomy

        posted by , October 01, 2011

Can you make a enterprise taxonomy sound exciting? How about selling a taxonomy to your organization?

At first, working with taxonomies seems as exciting as watching paint dry. But the fact is that a good taxonomy is valuable and easy to sell. Enterprise taxonomies fit your strategies, capabilities and models into neat little boxes. In other words, they have the power to impose order on complex enterprises.

Enterprise Taxonomies

Enterprise taxonomies are vocabularies used to describe an organization. Any patterns that can be found in your business, operations or technology can potentially be described as taxonomies. Common examples include:

- business capabilities
- organizational roles
- product catalogues
- customer types
- order types
- operational capabilities
- technology platforms

Taxonomies are typically hierarchical — meaning they are defined at (progressively more detailed) levels.

The Value of Enterprise Taxonomies

Whether information is textual, visual or verbal — there is always room for subjective interpretation. Taxonomies structure information as building blocks that leave little to the imagination. In other words, they ensure that information is interpreted consistently.

There are several valuable uses for taxonomies:

- to drive reporting and metrics
- to clarify communication and documentation
- to improve business processes

How to sell a Enterprise Taxonomy

Taxonomies impose order — they can easily be perceived as dictatorial and rigid.

The key to selling a taxonomy to your organization is collaboration. Stakeholders who feel consulted are less likely to resist adoption. Ideally, all stakeholders feel that the taxonomy is their idea.

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