Ed Shepherdson
SVP, Enterprise Solutions

20130711-155143.jpgA recent TED talk by Renny Gleeson on “the story of a page not found” got me thinking. When we land on a website’s “404 page not found” error message, we get upset and wonder why the website administrator would allow such a thing to happen. We also tend to expect that hitting the “send feedback” button will solve the problem in an hour or so. Unfortunately, this is not the case with finding knowledge within your organization, even after traditional knowledge management initiatives have ended.

Do you find in your day-to-day job, when you need information and knowledge, you end up going from application to application and then to Google, asking the same question, only to get results not relevant to your query? Sometimes, I just go to my friend Johnny – who knows everything – most of the time; but when even he doesn’t know, he’ll suggest I try the applications and website searches I’ve already tried. And then he’ll suggest I try Bill, who then tries Jane. And so on and so on it goes. (Knowledge management programs just don’t seem to work – and I would say it’s because knowledge can’t be managed.)

Why do we accept this? Why do we continue this inefficient, frustrating and wasteful cycle of search? We just go on our way and accept that we don’t have the information needed to complete daily tasks. Some studies even say that 40% of people pass on misinformation to give them a feeling that the task was completed. Is this the way to run a business? Is that the result of knowledge management?

In many cases, the information actually exists, but knowledge workers aren’t aware it exists or don’t know where to find it. Coveo helps organizations bring together the collective knowledge of your information ecosystem, so that contextual content can be found and used. And when something is not found, it can identify what is missing with confidence, allowing people to take action and fix the issue, versus simply ignoring it. Is this enterprise search or knowledge management transformation?

I’m taking a stand. Let’s stamp out corporate 404 – information not found. Are you with me?

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About Ed Shepherdson

As the Senior Vice President of Enterprise Solutions, Ed Shepherdson oversees Coveo’s Knowledge 360 Solutions, with a strong focus on the company’s Knowledge 360 Solutions for Customer Service. Mr. Shepherdson brings 30 years of experience in the technology industry to his role with Coveo. Prior to joining Coveo, he spent 18 years at Cognos, now an IBM company, where he most recently served as Vice President of Global Customer Support. While at Cognos, Mr. Shepherdson also held a variety of senior positions in the company’s Research and Development and Applications Development teams. Mr. Shepherdson has also served as an Advisory Board member in several industry associations, including the Technology Services Industry Association (TSIA) and Service Strategies Corporation, which sets the standards for the Technology Services and Support Industry. Mr. Shepherdson holds a Masters Degree in Organizational Leadership and completed the Ivey Executive Program at the Richard Ivey School of Business at Western University. Outside of work, he is an avid golfer, enjoys watching Jr. hockey and spending time with his wife, son and daughter.

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