The Internet of Things: A Primer for Information Professionals

Download here

What were you doing in 2008? Whatever you were doing, it is unlikely that you were celebrating the eclipse of the human race (although the global financial crisis may have given you some cause to do so). According to Cisco (2011), in 2008, the number of things connected to the internet exceeded the number of people on earth. These “things” are not just media devices directly controlled by human beings (computers, laptops, phones, tablets) but sensors – attached to plants, animals, cars, buildings and factories.

The Internet of Things is now “a thing”. It is topic of discussion, speculation and investment. Like many of the topics we discuss in these articles, it is almost certainly a source of hype. However the broad range of technologies under the IoT heading are real and will have a long term impact on our personal and professional lives.

This article will begin by outlining the technological developments that have driven the development of IoT. We will continue by outlining some of the emerging applications that we can see now and in the near future. We will then discuss privacy and security concerns. We will end with some observations on the impacts of these technologies on information professionals.

Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Enterprise Social Networks – Case Studies

Download article here

In the previous article, we recounted a brief history of social media in both the public world of the internet, the private spaces of organisations and the blurred lines in between. This article is less theoretical and more practical in focus. We will begin by discussing the elements that make up Enterprise Social Network (ESN) platforms and how they differ from other collaboration tools that have been around for longer. We discuss how these tools can generate value for users and the case studies where they have had a positive impact on the performance of organisations. We will end with a summary of good implementation practices for these tools.

Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged | Leave a comment

Enterprise Social Software – Setting Out The Landscape

Download article now

Social software is big business. Facebook has 1.3 billion monthly active users . LinkedIn has 300 million users. Twitter has 271 million monthly active users. These are huge numbers – which indicate that these are sites that people want to use. To the corporate IT crowd they are present a challenge. Most people do not want to use the finance or HR systems of their employers. They only do so because they have to. So the idea of cashing in on the cred and hype of Facebook et al and implementing systems that people want to use is enticing. At the same time, the ways in which employees and customers use social media is unnerving for organisations. They are seen as a waste of time with people posting pictures of their cats or chatting with the friends. Or they are seen as an active risk with employees giving away trade secrets or customers bad mouthing you. Organisations perceive that they cannot fully control social media and this lack of control is disturbing for managers. But what if you could produce versions of these tools that offered the best of both worlds – tools that people want to use to share and collaborate but that also offer safeguards around control and security?

Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged | 2 Comments

What do you call knowledge management?

Download the list of what people call it.

Stan Garfield deserves a shout out here but so does everyone else who contributed.

Posted in Notes | Tagged | 1 Comment

Individual decision-making and information management

Download now

Our lives are a parade of decisions that we make with a greater or lesser degree of consciousness. Some are banal (“tea or coffee?”) and some are momentous (“will you marry me?”). We would rather make good decisions than bad ones and yet rarely reflect on the process of how we make them or how we might improve doing so. On some level we know that if we made better decisions, our lives would be better but we just carry on making decisions and hoping for the best.

Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged | Leave a comment

Enterprise Search Case Studies

Download Now.

Information professionals have a lot to bring to the use of search, and can learn a great deal from other disciplines, such as software design, natural language processing, user experience and analytics. This article discusses two case studies of enterprise search implementations. The first case study details the implementation of Google Search Appliance at a Western Australian utilities company. The second case study examines the implementation of Lucene Solr at a Swedish health organisation. The third part of the article provides a summary of the key lessons from the case studies in terms of planning, resourcing and analytics. We conclude by considering some future paths for the user search experience.

Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged | Leave a comment

Information Management for Sales & Marketing

Download now

Sales and marketing has a poor reputation among the general public. We encounter many salespeople in the course of our lives and not enough of them are excellent at their jobs. We also encounter the products of bad marketers, for example, advertising as interruption and products with no clear value to the user presented. However, this does not mean that sales and marketing are not valid activities to undertake. At their heart, the goals of good sales and marketing are admirable: to ensure that products and services meet a customer need and that potential customers understand how a product or service can meet their need. We only notice bad sales and marketing because it interrupts and annoys us. Good sales and marketing is rarely noticed and appreciated.

Information plays a critical role in good sales and marketing. Sales and marketing professionals do not always acknowledge this. Many are too busy selling or marketing to reflect on the resources that they draw on or the processes in which they engage. Information professionals do not necessarily have a sales or marketing background and so as outsiders may struggle to articulate the roles that they play in these processes.

This article highlights the role that information plays in sales and marketing and provides an overview of three key areas of information for this domain. It explains to information professionals some of the different archetypes that make up the sales and marketing world and the role that information plays in their lives. The final section discusses the role of information technology in sales and marketing – a role that for the last 20 years has been revolutionary.

Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Knowledge Management in Professional Services – the song remains the same

Last week, I found myself at Knowledge Management in Professional Services.

Some comments:

  • There has been a lot of M&A activity in the legal and engineering consulting sectors. Since 2010, Norton Rose Fulbright has grown by M&A / JV from a set of largely national firms to an international network. SKM has been acquired by Jacobs and GHD has made a number of US acquisitions.
  • This M&A activity has led to more globalised firms. While the ‘official’ working language for these organisations remains English, they also have to cope with increasingly linguistic and cultural diversity among staff. In some respects, this is simply professional services following their clients – “following” implying they are both tracking them and also trailing them.
  • Global M&A also means integrating systems and processes and trying to forge common standards while being sensitive to local regulatory and client needs.
  • Operationalising and embedding KM activities so they are part of work rather than an optional extra remains an issue everywhere. This is not a new observation but it is an important one.
  • Getting sponsorship, aligning with business strategy, showing value, measurement are cropped up (as they always do at events like this).
  • Technology integration was also a common theme. Not just from M&A activity but trying to integrate CRM, social, document mgt, records mgt, email, etc to make life simpler rather than more complicated for staff.
  • Posted in Presentations & Events | Tagged | Leave a comment

    Sydney Facilitators Network – Human Sound Project

    The Sydney Facilitators Network ran a session with the Human Sound Project (or Simon Jankelson). I have to say it was good. Bonkers but good.

    For a taste, please see (and hear) here:

    Posted in Notes | Tagged | Leave a comment

    Enterprise search

    This article provides an introduction to the issues around enterprise search for information professionals. It begins by outlining the differences between public search and enterprise search. It identifies the major players in the enterprise search market. It ends with recommendations for enterprise search implementation and some comments about the future of search.

    Download Now

    Posted in Articles & Papers | Tagged | Leave a comment