Are there best practices for content governance when working with DITA tables?

Content governance is crucial when working with DITA tables to ensure consistency, quality, and compliance with organizational standards. Some best practices include style and formatting standards, table structure templates, metadata standards, implementing a review and approval workflow, version control, optimizing content reuse, implementing access control, content localization, creating metadata taxonomies, and performing content audits.

Style and Formatting Standards:

Define and document style and formatting guidelines specific to DITA tables. This includes rules for fonts, colors, cell alignment, and border styles.

Table Structure Templates:

Create reusable templates for common table structures. These templates can include predefined column headers, styles, and any additional elements needed for consistency.

Metadata Standards:

Clearly define metadata standards for DITA tables. Determine what information should be included, such as table titles, captions, or IDs. This metadata should be consistently applied.

Review and Approval Workflow:

Implement a review and approval process for DITA tables. Assign roles and responsibilities, and establish a workflow for content review and sign-off.

Version Control:

Utilize version control systems (VCS) to track changes and revisions in DITA tables. Maintain a version history to ensure content can be reverted to previous states if necessary.

Content Reuse:

Encourage content reuse by linking to or embedding DITA tables from a centralized repository. This reduces redundancy and ensures that the most up-to-date tables are used.

Access Control:

Implement access controls to restrict who can create, edit, or delete DITA tables. Define roles and permissions to manage content contributors effectively.

Content Localization:

When working with multilingual content, establish guidelines for translating DITA tables. Ensure that translations maintain the same structure and formatting as the source content.

Metadata Taxonomies:

Develop metadata taxonomies for categorizing DITA tables. This makes it easier to classify and search for specific tables within a large repository.

Content Audits:

Periodically audit DITA tables to ensure they adhere to established guidelines. Identify and rectify inconsistencies, inaccuracies, or outdated content.


A software documentation team follows content governance best practices for DITA tables.

Table Style:

All tables must follow the organization’s defined table style, which includes a specific font, background color, and border thickness.


Each table should have a title and a unique identifier. Metadata fields include table title, table ID, and date of last modification.

Review Process:

DITA tables undergo a two-step review process. Authors submit tables for review by peers, followed by a final review by an editor. Each reviewer follows a predefined checklist.

Version Control:

DITA tables are stored in a version control system (VCS), allowing authors to track changes, compare versions, and revert to earlier states if necessary.

Content Reuse:

Commonly used tables, such as copyright notices or legal disclaimers, are stored in a centralized repository and linked to the documentation. This ensures consistency across multiple documents.