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Enterprise Search and Discovery Capability: The Factors and Generative Mechanisms for User Satisfaction

February 2019

Published onFeb 29, 2020
Enterprise Search and Discovery Capability: The Factors and Generative Mechanisms for User Satisfaction

Cleverly, Paul H., and Simon  Burnett. "Enterprise Search and Discovery Capability: The Factors and Generative Mechanisms for User Satisfaction"  Journal of Information Science  45(1)(2019): 29 - 52. (https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0165551518770969). - Two professors at Scotland's Robert Gordon University conducted a multi-year study of user satisfaction, or dissatisfaction, with a company's enterprise search and discovery system. The research was sparked by their conclusion, after an extensive literature review, that there is a "lack of a holistic study of enterprise search and discovery capability in the academic literature." The authors collected and analyzed more than 1000 responses from users over two years, supplemented by interviews with selected commenters. Users framed their satisfaction/dissatisfaction by comparison to Internet searching. The concept of "Google habitus" summarized "how people think, feel and act, where Internet search engines may have enabled a reconfiguration of human searching habits." The researchers were looking for "generative mechanisms," or "an unobserved entity, process or structure that acts as an ultimate cause..." They concluded that their analysis "may provide the first empirical support for what some enterprise search practitioners have been saying for some time: effective search capability in the enterprise requires more than technology." It also requires an emphasis on both information literacy and information culture. Readers who want to dig deeper can consult Dr. Cleverley's dissertation, which was a runner-up in the 2018 iSchools Doctoral Dissertation Awards. - NN

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