Enterprise Search by White Is Vital Tool in Business Search Management
January 24, 2013
Martin White, information management consultant and Managing Director of Intranet Focus Ltd., is one of the leading experts on enterprise search and information access. White has published seven books on topics surrounding information consultancy and enterprise search applications. His most recent publication, Enterprise Search: Enhancing Business Performance, focuses on how to plan and implement a managed search environment in your corporation. The book explains how to meet both the needs of your business and your employees.
White makes a clear business case for search, emphasizing the need to evaluate current search systems and the creation of a support team. The book is well organized and easy to read, with a thorough preface giving an overview of chapters and topics as well as simplified summaries at the end of each chapter. This style makes White’s recent book a great tool for the busy professional.
Chapter 12 is a recommended starting place, listing twelve critical success factors. White states that if you don’t meet at least eight of these twelve, which include investing in a search support team, getting the best out of your current investment in search, and providing location-independent search, then you definitely need the contents of this book.
In Chapter 10, titled Managing Search, White expands on the idea of managing a search support team:
“Implementing search should never be ‘a project’. The work of ensuring that users continue to have high levels of search satisfaction will never come to a close. Each week, and perhaps even most days, there will be something that needs attention. The role of the search support team is not just to be reactive but to anticipate when changes to the search application need to be made, or to identify a training requirement that will address an issue that is just starting to show up on the search logs and user satisfaction surveys.”
Most organizations are not prepared for the rate of growth of information that they are experiencing. White does a great job dissecting the need for enterprise search and then giving you the tools to successfully manage your system, based on far more than just available technology. The section on the future of enterprise search, Chapter 11, stood out to me. White makes an excellent case for why this topic can no longer be ignored.
Additional features include a thorough glossary, lists of books and blogs on information retrieval and enterprise search, and resources for further reading. The book is available here from O’Reilly Media in eBook and print formats. Highly recommended.
Andrea Hayden, January 24, 2013