In May this year I ran an enterprise search strategy workshop at the Enterprise Search Summit in New York. The format of this workshop was highly participative, with the aim of making sure that by the end of the workshop every participant had met every other participant, so gaining a valuable network to work with after the event. I also set up a Basecamp site to enable participants to share ideas and in some cases additional documents. The overall result was a score of 4.8 out of 5, so it clearly worked. I showed quite a number of good and poor website search implementations, which I found was a good way of sparking some lively conversations.

I am now repeating the workshops in three locations over the next three months.

Although the overall objective is to help participants develop or enhance a search strategy the workshops are also an opportunity to raise any search-related topic for discussion and hopefully resolution. So think of the workshop as a search clinic as well as a strategy discussion. The workshop will cover both internal and website search, as well as some suggestions about how Big Data and enterprise search need to be seen as complementary applications. The challenge of how to sell the benefits of search investment to a senior leadership team will also be considered.

In the London and Copenhagen workshops, which are full day events, I will also be covering information management strategy development, as search (and intranet) strategies need to sit within an overall corporate information management framework.

On 26 November I will be giving a workshop at the BCS IRSG Search Solutions conference on the literature of search (books, reports, surveys blogs, Tweets etc) though this is not yet up on the conference website. Delegates to the search strategy workshops will receive a  list of some of the main resources that will be presented at the workshop that will be a revised version of the current list on my website.

Martin White

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