Gartner Research

The SharePoint 2010 Managed Metadata Service: What It Is and Why You Should Be Using It

Published: 06 September 2011

ID: G00214457

Analyst(s): Darin Stewart


The managed metadata service is a dramatic step forward in metadata capabilities within SharePoint. Centrally managed metadata enhances content management capabilities and simplifies their administration. Binding metadata fields to centrally managed vocabularies has the same impact on metadata itself. The ability to publish and reuse SharePoint metadata and vocabularies significantly reduces the effort necessary to provide and support consistent metadata across the enterprise. The managed metadata service increases the likelihood that appropriate metadata will be consistently supplied by end users by simplifying the process of content enrichment and tagging. This makes SharePoint content more findable, usable, and, ultimately, valuable.

Table Of Contents

Summary of Findings


  • (Re)introducing Metadata
  • Managed Vocabularies
  • The SharePoint 2010 Managed Metadata Service
  • Content Type Syndication
  • Enhancing SharePoint Applications With the Managed Metadata Service
    • Simplifying Content Enrichment
    • Improving Content Navigation
    • Improving Content Search
    • Simplifying Content Management
  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Create and Train a SharePoint Metadata Team
  • Determine Current Information Seeking Needs and Behaviors
  • Define a Minimal, Broadly Applicable Metadata Framework
  • Create a Central Managed Metadata Service Application
    • Create or Acquire a Simple, Broadly Applicable Vocabulary
  • Implement a Targeted, Well-Defined Pilot Project

The Details

  • The Metadata Team
    • Metadata Creation
    • SharePoint Administration
    • Content Enrichment
  • Importing Taxonomies
  • Vocabulary Standards

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