Monday, August 25, 2008

Enterprise Search - Impact on How We Do Business

Knowledge workers spend approximately a quarter of their time searching for information, but how successful are they at locating what they are looking for? Our panel members have had enterprise search engines implemented at their respective firms for over a year and discuss the changes they have encountered with enterprise search.

  • Robert Guilbert - Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen + Katz
  • Jeff Rovner - O'Melveny + Meyers LLP
  • Rachelle DeGregory - Sheppard, Mullin, Richter + Hampton LLP
  • Chad Ergun - White + Case LLP
My Notes:

Recommind at O'Melveny + Meyers LLP

Jeff was heavily influenced by the Long Tail (as explained in the The Long Tail by Chris Anderson). Their analysis of enterprise search tools was based, in part, by what was coming out of the consumer internet. The firm chose Recommind. Their search solution imputes lots of of information about a document based on the client/matter designation assigned to the documents. They pull information form the financial system, the matter tracking system, etc. and add it to the metadata for the document.

They started the Recommind proof of concept in November 2006, finished this June 2007 and launched it in September of 2007. They started with Recommind as a stand alone application. They used flickr as model for the the visual landing page. They also modeled the search training on searching for products on internet shopping sites. If you could shop online at Macy's, you could use Recommind.

Their second stage of Recommind was integrating it into the intranet. For example, the people search uses the Recommind people search tool. You can filter the search results or used an advanced search to find very specific skills.

Autonomy for White + Case

Chad's experience was similar to Jeff's experience. they put together a very long list of features and comparison of four vendors. They picked autonomy. A big issue for them is that they have 38 office with many different language.

They did a quiet roll out of the product. Their IT systems are very decentralized. Each office had their own document managment system. It would take hours for an attorney to hook into all of the different offices and conduct the search across all 38 systems.

They have Autonomy index each of the systems and create a united search. They get blazing speed. (Especially compared to the searching each of the separate document management systems.)

Autonomy also has a desktop application to go along with the web-based search. This was really fast. It also can be incorporated into MS Word. As you type in a document it show you other relevant information in the firm's resources.

They will also have a search for voicemail.

. . . .


The panel thought the tagging features in the next versions of Universal Search and Recommind will be very useful.

Other thoughts:

My ILTA Schedule

UPDATE: slight revision to protect the innocent

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