Getting the most out of SharePoint 2010 should involve the new Managed Metadata Service. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this service and the support it provides for modeling and deploying a rich corporate taxonomy, I’d start by reading Pat’s post Introducing Enterprise Metadata Management. By knowing how the documents and concepts could be grouped together you can start shaping the user experience with your SharePoint instance. Once you decide that you want to take the organization of your enterprise content to the next level, you need to decide how to organize your documents. If you are lucky, you already have a well defined taxonomy that can be imported into the Term Store with SharePoint’s import capabilities. Even if you have something that starts to help organize your data the power of leveraging other views of the subject you already have will help find improved ways to access and organize your data for the users. If your organization hasn’t started to organize, or wants to improve their taxonomies, or wants to compare their data to make sure there aren’t areas where you haven’t covered, you now can find pre-built foundational taxonomies in a variety of fields and expertise.

The SharePoint team has teamed up with WAND, a leading provider of Enterprise Taxonomies, to provide a starting point and make their General Business Taxonomy available as a freely available download. The General Business Taxonomy consists of common functional areas that exist in most businesses. The General Business Taxonomy can be imported in to the SharePoint 2010 term store within minutes and provides a great starting point for customers looking to build out term sets and take advantage of the Managed Metadata Service. In addition to this freely available download, WAND provide a range of taxonomies covering a variety of domains including Products and Services, Jobs, Skills, Medical, Finance, Records Retention, Legal, Insurance, Manufacturing, Information Technology, and Mining

Download the General Business Taxonomy today and start to explore the benefits that taxonomy can bring to your business and your people.

If you’re new to taxonomy and the benefits it can bring to your business, take a look at the following sites: