Coveo Explains: Complex Enterprise Search Delivered in a Day

November 27, 2013

The subtitle is the keeper, however: “No, I’m not insane.” The insane person is Wim Nijmeijer or Nicky Singh. Interesting semantic connection to either entity I believe. I learned this “insanity” stuff in a candidate chunk of possible PR ersatz Since the publication of the New York Times’ story about Vocus and its PR spam, I have started a collection of search vendor messaging that may be a trifle light in the protein department.

Here’s the passage I noted:

Today Coveo announced that it will lead a session at Search Solutions 2013 on Wednesday, November 27 in London, UK.

No problem except that Coveo itself announces that its staff will explain the nuances behind “No, I’m not insane.” A third party “voice” might help.

There were some supporting “facts”. Here’s an example of a fact:

The reality is that many enterprise search implementations are far from simple, and often match the complexity of the systems they need to interface with. Coveo understands the complexity and challenges of enterprise search. Our revolutionary Search & Relevance Technology securely connects with all of an organization’s systems, and harnesses big, fragmented data from any combination of cloud, social and on-premise systems — without complex integrations.

Okay. Okay, well, “facts” may be too strong a word. I think the “revolutionary” and the “all” are going to be tough for me to accept. In a large organization, figuring out what not to make available can be time consuming in my experience. Toss is the information that will cause the company to feel a bit of heat, and you have some heavy lifting.

For instance, is “all” possible in today’s regulated environment. What about employee medical records, documents related to secret contracts and research work, salary information, clinical trial data, information related to a legal matter, and “any combination of cloud, social, and on premises systems”? Insane? Okay.

Well, maybe Coveo can deliver?

My observations:

  1. On a conference call with an enterprise search vendor, I pointed out that marketing enterprise solutions has changed. Hyperbole and cheerleading have replaced the more mundane information that answers such questions as, “Will this system work?” There continues to be skepticism in some circles about the claims of search vendors.
  2. Sending messages about oneself are interesting but even Paris Hilton and Lady Gaga employ publicists. Sure, Lady Gaga uses a drone dress to get media coverage, but she doesn’t issue a news release that says, “No, I’m not insane.”
  3. Enterprise search groups on LinkedIn are struggling with the question, “Why do vendors get fired?” The reason goes back to the days of Verity. That company charted the course that many vendors wittingly or unwittingly followed; that is, promise absolutely anything to get the job. The legacy of Verity’s mind boggling complexity are marketing assertions that enterprise search works and can be up and running in a day.

Not even Google can make that eight hour assertion stick for the new Google Search Appliance with 100 percent confidence in my experience.

Anyway, by the time you read this, the lecture “No, I’m not insane” by a Coveo expert will be over. I suppose I can catch the summary in the Guardian.  Stop the presses.

Stephen E Arnold, November 27, 2013


One Response to “Coveo Explains: Complex Enterprise Search Delivered in a Day”

  1. Charlie Hull on November 27th, 2013 9:52 am

    I’m at the Search Solutions event and I did wonder if ‘a day’ included time for mapping schemas from source to the search engine….turns out it doesn’t. The presenter was mainly relying on the message that because Coveo has written lots of their own connectors, it should all ‘just work’ – I’m not sure this is the whole story.

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