Organizational problems manifest in the site

A website itself is rarely the real problem, or the real solution. Usually, the problem isn’t limited to whatever’s going on in the interface, the problems are in lower pace layers, like people or structure.

I’ve worked on projects where our main recommendations were about resourcing— like the web team and the content team couldn’t be separate anymore, because it didn’t make sense with their work. I’ve also worked on projects where the main problem was in the technical structure of the system they were using.

For one project I worked on, there was a huge problem with tons and tons of support content on their site, that had a 30% duplication rate. The problem with this isn’t the end user interface or the way the website is designed, the problem is that in their CMS, creating a new document is way easier than looking to see whether one already exists and updating it. So of course, that’s what their technical writers do. No amount of refreshing the look and feel of the site is going to solve that, it’s structural.