Joan Morris Searching for accuracy - A VIP Editorial
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By Joan Morris


I believe that the negative effects of not having good, actionable data are far reaching for a company when it does not have access to accurate, competent data. Actionable content means different things to different users. Regardless, however, companies need monitoring products or services, as well as collaboration and customisation.

Before the introduction of alerting and monitoring products we were not able to react fast enough, or be as informed. An individual or company had to troll the halls of government or send staff to conferences and wait to have the information translated or turned over to the reading room.

We have come a long way since then.

However, information overload is something we struggle with every day. How can we keep up with all the new government regulations? How can we get up to speed in a very short period of time on all these changes? We need to be smart about everything, and be able to speak intelligently about a multitude of topics.

One thing librarians and researchers in other industries would like to do is to be able to use methods such as single search within their workflow. Another is to have experts filter relevant information. The products reviewed in this issue both demonstrate how information tools are working to meet this demand.

NovaRes is a unique product for the financial services industry. This global regulatory and monitoring service has found a targeted niche to fill. With information overload, and the need to filter and monitor regulatory information, this type of product has become increasingly important.

SciVerse is an excellent first effort to begin the process of bridging the gap between the information professional and the information vendor, because it fosters collaboration in a way not seen or experienced by both before. With SciVerse search options, users are given many choices to customise their experience. Researchers and librarians can use these applications to work with developers to customise their own look and feel.

Essentially, these information publishers are saying let's work together so that we can give you the tools that operate on a principal of seamless workflow.

Researchers and librarians must justify every product in their information centre. Polling end users is a strong part of the renewal process. Information publishers try to remove duplication and shorten training time but still have to learn several obtuse search languages, in which the results suffer and the concerns, such as "Did I find everything? Was there another way to find a complete list? If so, can we do this for all industries?" still remain tantamount. Faster is always the way researchers want to go, while not losing accuracy.

Building other applications with your developers so that you can move information across variable platforms is a wonderful idea. This makes it easier to share and leverage your content and the information you are purchasing. Company budgets are shrinking to purchase information, yet accountability remains high.

I think all users can agree the coverage, the add-ons, the monitoring and real-time features are indeed useful, relevant ‒ and timely. They help deliver the kind of value that organisations can quantify to help justify information resources.

Joan Morris

Joan Morris is principal at JMF Solutions, where she specialises in knowledge enhancement, market data and information services.

Previously, Joan was the senior vice president and information manager at Lazard Freres LLP, where she negotiated global and domestic contracts, led a team in mergers and acquisitions, fostered research in competitive intelligence and enhanced new market data products.

Joan holds an MLS degree from Pratt Institute and a BA in political science from the City University of New York. She is a frequent speaker on the topic of information procurement and workflow integration. She can be reached through Linkedin.

This editorial appears in VIP Magazine No. 98, January 2012. Purchase online >>

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