A Strategic Approach to Search

The other week I attended ”From business to buttons” a yearly conference about usability and ‘designing for effect’ held in Malmö. Maria from Findwise was there to talk about ‘search driven design – or why can’t or intranet be more like Google?’, while I had the privilege to walk around talking to attendees about search.

The conference gathered people from a broad range of industries such as telecom, banking, retail etc, but what struck me the most was that no matter how different their business was, their challenges when it came to Enterprise Search where like peas in a pod. The employees just want to find the information they need to do their job in an efficient way. Preferably by typing a simple keyword and get accurate results in a Google-stylish way. Many companies have made investments in Enterprise Search platforms, hoping that this will magically increase findability.

Back at the office I got hold of a new study on Findability, made by Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM). The survey shows that out of 500 businesses 49% of survey respondents “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that it is a difficult and time consuming process to find the information they need to do their job. Furthermore the study suggests that “the fault does not lie with technology solution providers; rather, most organizations have failed to take a strategic approach to enterprise search: 49% of respondents report having “No Formal Goal” for enterprise Findability within their organizations”.

Findability survey

When looking at current Findwise customers one realizes that the success stories are all based on the same objective reason: the strategic approach, which has been focusing their business and end-users, looking at the technological investment as an enabler rather than a solution. The research paper from AIIM will be presented in a webinar on June 26:th, which I believe can be interesting. However, apart from establishing the fact that your company is facing the same challenges as everyone else, feel free to ask us how other companies have been using a strategic approach within this area; so you can use that knowledge to enhance your own solution.

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