Home > Articles

  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

Implementing a Best Practices Information Architecture from the Very Beginning

One of the great things about SharePoint is that it is very easy for users to store content, create content, and navigate. This can also become a challenge because from an IT and records management (RM) or information management perspective, it is important to get in front of this “challenge” as soon as possible so that a organizationally specific IM policy can be put in place before there are thousands or even hundreds of thousands of documents, records, and related content.

There is no magic answer to address this issue within all organizations because it differs among companies, their users, and the type of business or vertical the company is in, as well as the culture of the organization. There are, for example, some construction or manufacturing companies that have embraced new technology and others that have waited to see how some of the new offerings in information technology will take hold and flourish or possibly stall.

There are healthcare institutions that have focused on collaboration and document management and others that have been focused on other areas such as Electronic Medical Records (EMR) projects or other patient-specific productivity initiatives.

Some government institutions have embraced and taken records management and the institution’s retention schedule head-on, and others have waited to see what regulatory or related laws may pass before implementing this technology.

My main point here is that regardless of your current state, it’s time to address the roadmap and focus on implementing SharePoint 2013 within your organization to meet the specific short- as well as long-term goals of the organization.

Understanding Your Organization’s User Base

Understanding your organization’s user base, as well as the types of documents, content, and records they currently utilize or may want to utilize, will put you in a more educated position to implement a solid SharePoint platform.

Identifying Your SharePoint User Audience

There will obviously be several different user audience types within your implementation, but what is the best way to go about understanding how they may use SharePoint on a day-to-day basis, as well as determining the types of content and content volume they may access and create?

You can determine this by performing interviews with the specific groups, teams, or departments either via conference calls and Lync/WebEx-type virtual meetings or in person, depending on how dispersed the team members are and their availability. Another way to approach this is by sending out questionnaires to the team or the specific set of department stakeholders with core questions such as these:

  • What are the standard functions that your department/team/business unit conducts in a given day or a given week (that is, what does a “day in the life” of your users look like)?
  • What types of documents does your “area” create or have stored (that is, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF, or are there any large files like CAD drawings, diagrams, media/video files, and so on)?
  • Are there specific users who own or create specific records or documents for your given “area” (that is, are there any “records managers” identified that you should be aware of)?
  • Are there any document retention schedules that exist within the organization that your “area” (department, business unit, team, and so forth) must follow or should be following in the near future?
  • Are there any current workflows or business automation processes that you should be aware of?
  • How are the documents within the given “area” stored currently (is there a network share, existing document management system, and so on)?
  • Is there a current SharePoint system or other technology implemented where frequently used documents or even published content is stored? If so, please provide additional information.
  • Would it be possible to get a “count” or possible estimate of the amount of content that currently exists (for example, 25GB and 125,000 documents)?
  • Are there any common templates that are used to create common or frequently used documents for your “area”?
  • Are there any scanning or OCR (optical character recognition) requirements within your “area”?
  • Are there any existing systems that “tie in” or integrate with your existing documents or processes that you should be aware of?

Laying Out a Plan for Document Libraries

As mentioned in the previous chapters, document libraries are collections of files in SharePoint 2013 that users share with other users within a given SharePoint site. Now that you understand the types of users as well as the documents they use, store, and work with, you will need to implement an information architecture that consists of the proper governed document libraries to meet these needs.

Some document libraries are used specifically for that area or department or such, and you may consider those “private” documents libraries that are accessible only by the team members or users of that given group.

Other document libraries are cross-functional and are accessed and used by many different users or groups within the organization. These document libraries may store “public” or frequently used content or may even be a document library that is created for a specific project the organization is conducting that many different users and groups need to access and contribute to.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020