Innovative Enterprise Search Solutions

By: Groshan Fabiola

The growth and evolution of information retrieval have been spectacular over the last ten years. Not too long ago, information retrieval could have easily been referred to as a petty discipline in information, whereas today millions of people worldwide experience it regularly. It is safe to say that the Internet is mostly responsible for having driven this revolution. However, the growth of information retrieval has also been brought about by enterprises seeking to network all of their information together.

It goes without saying that all enterprises, whether governmental, commercial, academic or nonprofit, have huge demands on information retrieval. The reason is more than obvious. Most of the information in an enterprise exists in many forms such as documents, HTML pages, media objects and paper, and not in relational databases. In other words, many enterprises are faced with the lack of structure in their information, which can make the information seeking process slow, complicated and expensive. Instead of investing in training, which is a must in the process of accessing information sources, enterprises prefer to reshape their information systems and use information retrieval systems, which are proven to increase the value of information assets in an enterprise. Enhancing the value of the information assets is an achievable goal if enterprises acknowledge the need to add structure to their information and retool their information systems.

While there are some techniques developed on the web that enterprises can adapt and use, most search techniques on the web are not applicable to enterprises. Enterprise search differs substantially from web search because of the different characteristics of the enterprise processes and content. Therefore, Internet search and enterprise search have followed different paths of evolution, and the difference between them is quite substantial.

It is in the best interest of each enterprise to make its information system functional by allowing all available information to be accessed irrespective of its storage format or location. This can be attained by means of a generic search portal. Enterprise search procedures that require elaborate training translate into increased costs. On the other hand, if enterprise search procedures are functional and the search engine technologies that the enterprise employs allow for easy and frequent access to relevant information, costs decrease and benefits increase. To the benefits of all enterprises and organizations, the latest innovations in the area of search engine technologies allow for the enterprise information search process to be fully reshaped.

There are many organizations that deploy enterprise search software. Subsequently, requirements may vary, beginning with software platforms and hardware constraints, all the way to security models, firewall, bandwidth, user communities, document formats and so forth. The ideal solution for enterprise search requirements is the implementation of a search engine paradigm that can be integrated perfectly into the existing information systems of the enterprise. A good example of such enterprise search solutions is DirectInfo, a family of products and services that allows enterprises to easily access their information assets. The specific requirements and deployment needs of each enterprise can be met by the DirectInfo solution, which can be deployed either out-of-the-box or highly customized.

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Enterprise Information Systems
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