What is optimal information?
Optimal information is both effective (it achieves a purpose that has value) and cost-effective (the value of the achievement is greater than the total cost of the information).
Typically, this means the information is clear, concise, and compelling – to the audience.
In our experience, most knowledge workers do not fully appreciate the economics of writing, and lack many of the information design skills required for their work.
To help your organisation to produce optimal information we can:
- train your staff (see Writing Essentials course)
- audit your information
- co-design optimal information
Information audit service
An information audit is an audit of your organisation’s entire information stock to determine which elements are helping you, and which are hindering you. (There is such a thing as too much information.)
The audit will provide your organisation with valuable business intelligence, including:
- areas where money is being wasted on information
- areas where money should be invested in information
- information and medium duplications or redundancies
- the data required to identify an optimal information architecture (see FAQs below)
Nakedize has developed its own information audit methodology, which produces optimal results when Simon is given access to all senior staff and strategic knowledge holders (for interviews and to complete questionnaires). Simon’s audit will provide you with a valuable report that reveals:
- what information you have (instances, forms, mediums, duplications, inconsistencies, ambiguities, redundancies)
- the true cost of your information (cost to create, disseminate, and store)
- the effectiveness and value of your information (which information is a benefit, which is a burden)
Information design service
As a writer and editor, Simon helps you and your team to design cost-effective documents that achieve their goals. Simon can provide:
- advice on specific documents, information systems, or information projects
- document or web site design
- management of the production of a key document or web site
- information architecture design (see FAQs below)
How do you book a service or get more information?
Please contact us to discuss or book an Optimal Information project.
Frequently asked questions
When is the ideal time to commission an information audit?
Given the current over supply of information, any time is probably a fair answer. But we have found three circumstances that make an information audit particularly valuable:
- When your organisation is new, because this gives you the precious opportunity to avoid common issues that will quickly consume resources needed for establishing your venture.
- When your organisation is old, because you are almost certain to have built up a vast stock of expensive, redundant information and processes that now slow you down and hold you back.
- Prior to a major information project, such as a new document management system, an intranet, or Microsoft SharePoint implementation. Remember, quality outputs require quality inputs.
What is an information architecture?
An information architecture is a blueprint of the simplest, most effective, most useful way of organising an entity’s information.
At the macro level, it should provide a single view (on a single page) of everything your organization does.
At the micro level, it should provide a glossary of terms (divisions, groups, roles, products, services, etc) and a filing system so that information is logically grouped, ranked, and ordered, making it easy to understand, file, and find.
A high-quality information architecture is an essential component of any form of information storage (such as digital folders, a document management system, an intranet, or Microsoft SharePoint).