Ten enterprise search zeros – how many apply to you?
Organisations are faced with supporting remote workers at a time when business priorities and processes are changing, and many workers will be taking on new and probably novel roles. This is not what intranets were designed for – seemingly endless hours of research rightly went into optimising the IA around well-defined business processes. Global companies are no longer global but a federation of individual isolated countries doing their best to keep things going without the global support they have been relying on. This is where effective search applications are going to be so important. The organisation will be at risk from not making the optimal decisions because important documents (which may be several years old) cannot be found. Changes in the business will mean that new types of queries will be posted and the current range of filters and facets may not be as appropriate as they were.
In my SearchCheck service the scores for each of the 30 elements of a search implementation range from 0 for no action being taken to 5 where best practice has been achieved. In this post I have listed out ten situations which warrant a zero score. In all the years I have been working on enterprise and intranet search projects I have not come across any client delivering a satisfactory search experience when they scored at 0 for these situations on my arrival at corporate headquarters.
I would suggest that you work through this list and tick how many apply across your organisation. If you end up with any ticks then you very unlikely to be able to meet current requirements and will certainly not be sufficiently agile in recovery in due course.
- There is no strategic plan for search in the organisation
- There is no defined budget or senior stakeholder
- We do not have a search team with defined roles and skills
- We have not set up a user requirements group
- We have not investigated the information requirements of users
- We have no guidelines for content quality and content curation
- We do not have a roadmap for application upgrades based on business and user requirements
- We do not undertake usability tests
- We do not actively review search logs and user feedback
- We do not provide any training and mentoring on how to use search applications