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CRM -- search for dynamicsLast week we announced a new application, Search for Dynamics (you can read the announcement here).  Search for Dynamics plugs into the Dynamics UI and brings up relevant information using the search engine inside SharePoint and SharePoint Online. 

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thumbs upOne of the great things about being a B2B sales professional is being involved in the lifecycle of a solution from its earliest stage, when it is just an idea, through production rollout. In my five years at BA Insight, I have been fortunate enough to be part of many innovative implementations of enterprise search and intranets.

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managing metadata isn't complicatedMy colleagues Don Miller and Mark Aschemeyer published their perspectives about the importance of metadata and connectivity, respectively, when it comes to enterprise search. Their debate is about which is more important in helping users find what they are looking for.  

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search vs sqlDo you ever feel like change sneaks up on you?  Or feel surprised at how much progress you’ve made over the course of time, when you don’t notice it day by day?

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cart before horseFull disclosure before I begin.  I have known my colleague Don Miller for almost 13 years.  We are SharePoint old-timers and passionate about enterprise search.  You might even say we are obsessive about search.

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mobile search“Jeff, do you have any insight into how people really use Delve?  People are asking me because of the recent announcement…I am confused about whether/how to roll it out, and it seems like a moving target. Can you shed some light on it please?”

I get this kind of email regularly.  Last week, after Microsoft announced a set of updates to Intelligence-powered search, Delve, and Microsoft Graph, I had six emails like this.  Hence this blog post – I’ll lay out the actual news, with some context, plus some observations and tips about how to take advantage of Delve.

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magic intranet searchingWe use search every hour and every day of the week, and it is awesome because it just works.  Every day you use Bing, Amazon, Google or Siri and you never stop to think about why the topic, result or document that you are looking for came back on top.  It just feels so easy - start typing or talking and automatically Google or Bing starts providing you suggestions to whatever your question may be.

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mobile searchToday BA Insight announced a new version of our Visual Refiners application (you can read the announcement here.  The focus of this release is bringing mobile search to Office 365 – so in addition to the core features of Visual Refiners, we’ve added support for:

  • Office 365: Visual Refiners is now available as a SharePoint-hosted add-in, which means it deploys easily in O365 tenants without the need for additional infrastructure.
     
  • Mobile devices:  in addition to being reactive, we have made visual refiners modal – which means that the refinement panel becomes full screen on a mobile device, and controls switch to designed-for-mobile styles for ease of use with limited screen real estate. 
     
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machine learningLast week we announced a new version of our AutoClassifier (you can read the announcement here). This release has many new features and capabilities, including the addition of machine learning into the AutoClassifier.  There is remarkable power in machine learning, and we’re excited to add this to our products.

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AnalyticsToday BA Insight announced a strategic and exclusive partnership with NGAGE Intelligence to develop a Next-Generation Analytics Platform. By the end of Q2, we expect to have a new platform available which will give our customers unparalleled insight into user interaction across multiple systems.  We're leveraging technology from both companies as well as the latest in business intelligence from Microsoft to bring a unique solution to market quickly.

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Tagged in: Legal Smart Analytics

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Predicting the futureIn my previous blog article, I set the stage for this year’s predictions by looking at my predictions for 2015 (the first year I made predictions) and 2016.  My track record definitely improved and I got 8 out of 10 predictions correct last year.  I also declared that I would make 2017’s predictions much more measurable.

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Predicting the futureIt’s that time again. It's become a bit of a tradition to lay out predictions for the coming year at the beginning of January.  For me, it's a relatively recent tradition I started in 2015.  My predictions focus around search, digital workplaces, and market dynamics involving Microsoft.  This year I started by recording a podcast, where I was interviewed about my 2017 predictions (you can listen to it here).

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SharePoint Intranet User AdoptionIn my 12 years working with over 150 enterprise SharePoint customers, I have heard a few common themes as to why SharePoint intranet projects fail. And, if your employees hate your intranet, then they won’t use it, no matter how much training you provide or how many user guides you prepare. At the end of the day, poor user adoption equals failed business opportunities and a failed project.

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SharePoint 2016 Just Got A Whole Lot Less UglyBack in March I did an analysis of “the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” of SharePoint 2016 (you can see our recorded webinar on this here).   This was just after the Release to Manufacturing (RTM) of SharePoint 2016. I went through it in four areas: Infrastructure, User Experience, Compliance, and Hybrid.   There was a lot more Good than anything else, but there were definitely some Ugly points.   Here’s a summary slide from that Webinar...

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Success One of the things I get asked most often is “What Makes Good Enterprise Search”? Every enterprise is different, so there is not a universal solution, but there are things that are common across every successful Enterprise Search project I’ve encountered.

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