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Chris Farnum | Resume
experience     education      skills, interests, & activities


327 Clark, Saline, MI 48176

Core Values:

  • All users deserve intuitive Web sites that meet their needs
  • Make information easier to find by organizing content, utilizing metadata and providing key access points
  • Determine key business goals, then design to maximize return on investment


Senior Information Architect
May 2005 - Present
  • Designed Web site organization and navigation systems for a broad range of Web-based solutions for clients including PPG, Colgate University, The Hartford Smart529, and MGAE
  • Performed user needs analysis, contextual research, business process analysis and organized complex content
  • Developed user interface functional specifications
  • Collaborated within multidisciplinary teams as part of an award-winning interactive professional services company
  • Contributed to the sales process by assisting in RFP responses, project scope estimates, and onsite presentations
  • Assisted in mentoring and training junior IA staff
Information Architect and Usability Design Product Manager
ProQuest Information and Learning
Sep. 2002 - April 2005
  • Responsible for improving and evolving the search interface and user experience for the company's flagship ProQuest product line of aggregated databases
  • Conducted user research, testing, and user experience design for a major re-release of the ProQuest search interface in Summer 2003
  • Defined project ideas, scope, and customer research plans for adding and enhancing the search interface, improving browsing, creating new customer databases, and improving the customer admin interface
  • Worked closely with other project managers, engineers, marketing and other stakeholders to coordinate the delivery of quarterly enhancements to the search platform
  • Managed the efforts of content writers, designers, and usability contractors
Information Architect
Compuware Corporation
Apr. 2001 - Aug. 2002
  • Consultant and web development team member with one of the leaders in global technology consulting
  • Developed wireframes and blueprints for projects including corporate marketing portals and enterprise web applications
  • Gained vital experience with the engineering and design process as key team member within multidisciplinary project delivery teams
Information Architect
Argus Associates
Dec. 1997- Mar. 2001
  • Senior consultant in a pioneering information architecture firm
  • Clients include Fortune 500 companies and Web leaders such as AT&T, Bell & Howell Information and Learning (formerly UMI), Egreetings.com, and SGI
  • Produced a variety of high impact deliverables including site blueprints, wireframes, controlled vocabularies, navigation systems, search interfaces, meta data strategies, and content management policies
  • Integrated user research techniques into the design process including task analysis, card sorting, and paper prototyping
  • Led teams of multiple IAs on projects to deliver evaluations, recommendations, and conceptual designs
Collection Development Specialist
Michigan Electronic Library
1996 - 1999
  • Maintained and developed the libraries and information science topical collection for a site built by librarians to be Michigan's premier public service Web portal
West Bloomfield Twp. Public Library
1995 - 1997
  • Served as a reference librarian and then as automation librarian for an institution that was one of the early leaders in connecting patrons to the Web
  • Site coordinator for the Innovative Interfaces Inc. library automation system
  • Web design for special projects including the library catalog web interface
  • Technical support and account management for Internet dial-in access
  • Direct public service including answering questions and teaching classes on using the Internet, databases, and the library catalog


Graduate, 1995
  The University of Michigan, School of Information and Library Studies, Ann Arbor, MI
  Master of Information and Library Studies
Undergraduate, 1992
  The University of Michigan, LS&A, Ann Arbor, MI
  Bachelor of Arts - English, Secondary Teaching Provisional Certification


  • Recent speaking experience includes presentations at the ASIS&T 2007 IA Summit and Internet User Experience 2007
  • Writings include a whitepaper, Tuning Up Site Search, and Information Architecture: Five Things Information Managers Need to Know in the Sept.-Oct. issue of Information Management Journal and online articles at Boxes and Arrows
  • Member of ASIS&T (American Society for Information Science & Technology, IAI (The Information Architecture Institute), and a regular participant in activities with the local chapter of UPA in south east Michigan
  • Member of the Information Architecture Summit conference planning committee for 2006 and 2007
  • Served as a mentor for four Information Architects as part of the IAI mentoring program
  • Design of search interfaces and controlled vocabularies including site taxonomies and thesauri
  • Over seven years experience working with Visio
  • Familiar with a variety of design tools including PhotoShop and HTML
  • Knowledgeable about search engines and content management systems