I think, as an IA, you’re always a little bit nervous when you’re delivering a CMS to a client. You worry that they’re going to ruin your creation with daft additions to a menu and not following advice. There are definitely strengths and weaknesses to having a CMS. Its the DIY of the digital world and unless you follow advice I think you can end up with a disaster.
Thankfully Sheffield Hallam University are really experienced at using content management systems. But they needed some help with an idea they’d had. They wanted a common template that they could use to build on top of to deliver sites for each of their research centres.
This was a really interesting challenge, designing IA as a template that could be used for different sites, without knowing exactly what they might be. I’m happy to say that after careful thought, it worked. The template has now been used to develop lots of sites. The core navigation and IA structures are shared across them, making management and maintenance much more straightforward.