Can Enterprise Search Solutions Really Improve Organisational Efficiency?
Enterprise Search, when done correctly, will improve the operational efficiency of any organisation.
Enterprise Search is a method to identify the content on enterprise platforms and index it so that it is available for search and display to the authorized users of that organisation. The content can have multiple sources like a database, file systems, emails or an intranet, amongst others.
It is, therefore, a software that allows making the organisation’s content searchable to a pre-defined set of audience. It is equivalent to a web search that a user may do on the open internet through search engines like Google or Yahoo.
Enterprise Search In Organisations Today
In today’s scenario, all organisations heavily depend on the multiple content sources to carry out their daily operations. These organisations need to give access to different types of content or intelligence to its employees so that they may disseminate their duties properly.
For example, all employees of a company use the intranet to access any information whenever they need it. To be specific, if an employee is looking for the leave policy of the organisation then he will search it on the intranet. Enterprise search enables such activities for the end user in a convenient and quick manner.
Similarly, the content may be present on other sources like e-mails, file systems, databases, servers or a cloud. Enterprise search works on all these platforms efficiently to hasten the search results for the employees.
For organizations who have implemented Enterprise Search, the benefits have been significant. It has brought in more efficiency, cost reduction, higher productivity and improved decision making. Many major companies like Johnson and Johnson, Ernst and Young, Novartis, Pfizer etc. have already implemented enterprise search solutions and they have seen success in terms of rate of adoption by employees and reduction in time spent for getting the search results, among others.
Enterprise Search For Operational Efficiency
Microsoft’s Principal Consultant Steven Nicolaou is a proponent of Microsoft Enterprise Search. He believes that enterprise search will go on to bring shorter cycles of innovation, continuous improvement in user experience, more integration with third-party applications and higher capacity to handle mediocre quality of content.
Enterprise Search, when done correctly, will improve the operational efficiency of any organisation. Many organisations hesitate in adopting it because the benefits are soft in nature and difficult to quantitatively measure. However, upon adoption, individual employees benefit from it in an incremental manner.
For example, an employee may see an improvement in personal efficiency when instead of having to go around asking his co-workers for information, he can find it on his laptop in a matter of seconds. It also creates an atmosphere of transparency as everyone has access to the same information.
Increasing Employee Efficiency
Apart from increasing employee efficiency, enterprise search has an important role in supporting the applications used across different organizational verticals. In customer support operations, enterprise search solutions render swiftness in search results leading to reduced time in addressing customer issues.
For e-commerce, better search directly improves the bottom line of the business. Finally, across any function, enterprise search encourages re-use of existing information and therefore avoidance of the cost of running a research or survey again by another person. We can say that it also aids efficient knowledge management in this way.
The field of enterprise search has roadblocks because of the difficulty in assessing the direct impact of this solution. But as the world moves towards generating more and more content, sifting through copious data will become a task, necessitating the adoption of enterprise search solutions by all organizations.