I’ve been concerned for some time that AIIM has not paid much attention to search management even though the level of support for just about every other element of information management has been very comprehensive and of a high quality. I was therefore very pleased to be invited by Atle Skjekkeland (the COO of AIIM) to contribute a set of six 20-minute video training courses on various aspects of search management. These are now available to AIIM members on the new search resource centre and cover

  • How to develop a search strategy
  • How to make a business case for search
  • How to set up and manage a search support team
  • How to plan open source search development projects
  • How to use search to access people and expertise
  • How to improve search with analytics

There are other courses listed but these are mine!

Talking over the scope and production of these courses with Atle in a hotel at Dulles Airport was the easy bit. In the end I probably spent ten days developing the courses. Each had to stand on its own but also have a common approach with the other five courses. The development of the slides was a very valuable exercise in working out the titles and bullet points to gave a coherent 20 minute course where there is no opportunity for participants to ask questions for clarification. Helpfully several clients volunteered to have me deliver the draft courses and all provided very helpful comments. However I do offer a two-day response to any emailed questions that participants have on the course content.

The original plan was that I would do the voice-overs for the slides but that turned in to a disaster as I found myself rambling on about particular topics that were of special interest. Moreover I found I was getting bored listening to my own voice time and time again. In the end I wrote a script and AIIM kindly arranged for a professional actor to do the voice-overs. Even the script-writing took a substantial amount of time because I had to take into account the need for a speaker to breath, something that in writing reports I never have to be concerned about. Overall it was a fascinating, challenging but (in the end!) very worthwhile project.

Martin White