One trend we have seen a fair amount of in The Trend Point is that vendor offering a one-size fits all solution for search so that clients do not have to customize. This past week, in particular, a few stories pointed to this topic.
One article, “The Myth of the Universal Enterprise Search Solution,” relayed the following perspective on a universal search option:
Aside from the fact that the universal search tool organizations are looking for doesn’t exist, two other factors cause failure in enterprise search projects. Typically, deployment roadmaps for enterprise search don’t define small stages that can provide wins at each step. Too much is left to depend on the success of big chunks of the rollout – chunks that are spaced far apart and that are at significant risk of delay or partial failure . . . Many firms that focus their resources on enterprise search initiatives neglect to move their existing unmanaged and unconsolidated content into fewer and better-managed repositories, a step which can enable easier and more efficient search.
Why does an organization want universal search that could work for any business? The concept intuitively connotes a cheaper cost, of course. In regards to this related issue of budgeting we saw “Budgeting for Enterprise Search is Difficult” describe the challenges IT faces when it comes to determining a level of funds for search. The summary is as follows:
At the point of developing a budget, an IT manager needs to have some idea of the range of packages and what the multiplier is (i.e. per server, per user, per instance). In addition, as with all enterprise software, there will often be a charge for additional software instances for test and development purposes and these (and additional hardware and middleware costs) can quickly mount up but are rarely listed.
While there may not be a universal search solution that works across the board for every business, it would be ridiculous to think that no enterprise search system could be deployed across a single enterprise — encompassing all departments. Working acroos all departments and data silos is the very definition of 3Enterprise” Search. We read about one such solution that can serve all departments in an enterprise organization in “Sinequa and VILT Extend Market Coverage through partnership.” The press release states:
Now, it is possible to use a single Unified Information Access (UIA) platform that indexes and search all repositories of an enterprise or public administration, be they document management systems, ERP or business database applications, CRM and customer support systems, and even email. The Sinequa UIA platform offers the analytic depth and the high performance necessary to deal with Big Data. The cost reduction that comes from this technological consolidation into one platform, combined with usability that allows a user to query data from heterogeneous sources through a single interface, offers “revolutionary” information access and value creation to user organizations.
The Unified Information Access platform as discussed in the last article presents a great option for businesses who want a single search infrastructure across all departments. Sinequa presents itself as the antithesis of information stuck in silos. The solution is deployable out-of-the-box for the right enterprise but it can also be customized to greater serve the needs of any particular client. One testament to their accommodations for clients is seen in the large library of connectors that come readily available to use; there is over 120 and counting.
Jane Smith, June 26, 2013