Enterprise search is the organized retrieval of stored business data within an organization so that users can securely enter and find data across enterprise databases. This type of software cleans and structures data to make information that is usually spread across a variety of repositories easier to find.
- Collect and update information from different data sources, types, and formats
- Index or archive data
- Provide intelligent search options to auto-complete, find similar, or rank by relevance
- Create an interface to search and retrieve data
- Allow users to refine their search using advanced filters
- Define user permissions to access information
- Next, a searchable index is created, and other value-added processing, such as metadata extraction and auto-summarization, may take place. These functions group information into logical categories that in turn can be searched and return results to users based on how the particular search engine has categorized them.
- Query processing–
- Once this index is created, queries can then be accepted. Queries aren’t necessarily questions, as they can also be just terms or phrases that represent whatever you’re looking for, type into the search box. At this point, the search engine processes the query by passing over the index, finding the information that matches the particular term or subject entered, and sending that information to some sort of processor, which then sorts the information by relevancy or other measures, clusters is based on the categorization, applies some other logic (such as “best bets” or “recommended best”).
Turning a database into a series of results is a five-part process. An enterprise search solution encompasses all steps of the process. The first three steps are completed before any “search” is actually made.
- Content Awareness: The search has to know which databases it can access, this is a process known as “content awareness.”
- Processing: The content has to be processed so that it can be quickly and efficiently recalled. The source content is converted to the same type of document so that it can be quickly searched by the search solution.
- Indexing: The processed content is sorted into an index that keeps track of the frequency of a term.
- Query: A user makes a query – or search. The query is a combination of what the user is looking for as well as directions to certain parts of the index. For example, if a user is searching for “Marketing Statistics” they make a query.
- Matching: The search compares the query to the index and returns any matching entries. The search will return any entries that include “Marketing Statistics,” but may also return similar results.
The last two steps are what most people think of when they think of a “search.” A request is made to the enterprise search engine to find a certain term and the engine returns results that relate to that term based on the tuning and optimization criteria.
This is where third-party search providers come into the picture. An advanced AI-algorithm-based search has the capability to index data from the content sources you provide, be it in or out of the cloud.
And with new startups sprouting, the competition has driven them to create search engines that advocate for unlimited content sources with out-of-the-box support and at no additional cost. It eliminates information silos across diverse platforms to give users a seamless experience.
Enterprise search is the software that cleans and structures data so that the information that is spread widely across a lot of depositories is easier to access. It is a kind of search for organized retrieval of the stored data for a business for the users to safely enter and find the information across databases of enterprises. Enterprise search can pull data without requiring integration from various sources. Those sources can be CRM, ERP, Product Lifestyle Management, and many more.
For web searches, the internet is an open network. The searches are public and anonymous, and access control is not a problem. Whereas in enterprise searches, security and its considerations are important. The resources found in web searches are mostly file-based like HTML, pdf, and GIF. Enterprise searches, apart from documents and files have SQL, Legacy Data Services, and more.
The first step is the identification of potential search engines. Among this, the first source of the list should be your current vendor, because you may have more than one or two search engines working in your workplace. The second source could be resources from analysts. After you have found your candidates, you need to narrow down your candidate list. Some of the features you need to look out for based on your expectations can be whether it’s self-hosted or not. Whether a hybrid engine would be better or a closed one. The goal is to cut off and narrow the list to the candidates that sound good to you. Thirdly, you would need to define your evaluation criteria, as in a search engine, that would not only be beneficial for the current client as well as for the future client. Then based on the evaluation score, you need to select the best search engine for you.
The importance of having an enterprise search engine lies in the time saved. Because a swift search on the engine yields what you or others in your team are looking for in some fraction of a second. Along with that, most software also offers ‘search as you type’ feature showing results while you progress on typing. It also makes the process of finding very old information easier and quicker. So, a good effect of it is that it boosts the productivity of employees.
If you have a business and want to improve your enterprise search, you need to have a tech support team to look after it daily- like maintaining the metadata, proper scheduling of crawls, and staying alert with security policy. Along with that, it should meet the expectations of the client. If you have different variations of nearly the same documents available, you should look at that to avoid confusion. With that, you should take caution to not have the wrong metadata. If it’s wrong, the data you search for will not appear. Therefore, there should be proper training for employees so that they understand enterprise search and it’s workings.