Why Information Architecture Is Critical For Today’s Businesses
In a broader sense, information is structured, processed and organised information designed to provide meaning to particular subject matter. It gives context to often difficult data and allows effective decision making by businesses. For instance, a single consumer’s sale in a restaurant is data; this becomes information only when the company is able to identify which menu item or combination of menu items produces the highest sales. The ability to extract useful information from this data is what information architecture is all about.
Information architecture thus refers to the process of building information systems that can efficiently extract information from multiple sources. This is done by creating a knowledge base, or a catalogue of information that the business can refer to. This knowledge base will contain everything from pricing guides to technical specifications. It will allow business owners and managers to make informed decisions on how to best use their information.
Information architecture provides a structure that makes information more manageable and helps business managers make informed decisions. Without good information architecture, information can get muddled and become unmanageable. Businesses can then become disorganized and lose information as they struggle to interpret it. Worse, they may choose the wrong information vendor, which may make their information more inaccurate than necessary. This is a recipe for disaster.
However, good information architecture is just the first step toward information management. Once information is in a well-designed catalogue, it is easier to manage and more accurate in its information content. For instance, when a food service manager is faced with a customer’s inquiry about the menu, she can access a variety of information sources in order to help her make an informed decision. She can obtain additional information through a variety of sources such as suppliers of ingredients, reviews from past customers, and maybe even an Internet search.
The Internet, of course, is a key player in making information more relevant and usable. One of the main purposes of the Internet was to provide information and to enable people to share it. Today, the Internet has become an integral part of business communications. Without an easily accessible knowledge base, a business can quickly lose customers who can find another provider.
Information technology management isn’t something that businesses decide upon. It is something that must be incorporated into a business from the very beginning. As information becomes more important to consumers, it becomes even more critical to ensure that all of the company’s information is kept up to date and available at all times. To ensure that this happens, information management professionals are very critical in ensuring that businesses have the right information at the right time, which makes them a very important partner in today’s competitive marketplace.