Intelligent Metadata Enabled Solutions for Professional Services

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  • OverviewChallenges and SolutionsUse CasesJob FunctionKnowledge Center

    Empowering Knowledge Identification and Sharing

    The inability to locate knowledge assets for reuse and repurposing results in high costs. Securely sharing information with partners and colleagues with specialized expertise is becoming vital in developing new services. Data sovereignty and compliance often lack enforceable processes. Concept Searching is the only solution that can provide security at the content level, address non-compliance, deliver concept based searching, and locate knowledge assets and expertise.

  • The Concept Searching Difference

  • concept-searching

    Concept-based searching


    Secure collaboration


    Holistic view of content


    Granular expertise identification


    Effective project teams

    Effective search is critical. Information exists across diverse functional groups, geographies, and product areas. A single secure unified search experience for the corporate workforce and project partners is key. Concept Searching provides rapidly deployed technologies that integrate information silos, provide one search interface, respect inherent security, and enable professionals to find the information and expertise they need through concept identification, eliminating data exposures, and identifying noncompliance and data sovereignty challenges.


    Is growth impacted due to a lack of information and poor collaboration?


    Is your organization constricted by access to diverse functional, geographic, product, and services teams?


    Do you think access to corporate memory and the expertise of other professionals would improve the quality of deliverables?


    Could new products or services be developed if staff had access to relevant, accurate, and topical information?


    Key Features

    Key Features

    Through automatic compound term metadata generation, auto-classification and taxonomy management solutions Concept Searching manages intellectual property, identifies sensitive information and noncompliance exposures, protects against data breaches, eliminates end user tagging, improves search, and enables secure project collaboration.

    Technology Benefits 
    • Enables secure collaboration through expertise location, shared knowledge, and communities of interest
    • Improves search results through elimination of manual tagging and the identification of concepts, topics, subjects, and the relationships between concepts, enabling delivery of content in context
    • Technology and device agnostic can be integrated with search engines and content repositories
    • Connects to diverse repositories, eliminating silos of information, presenting one enterprise search interface
    • Cleanses content stores and reduces redundant and out-of-date content, while identifying high value content that typically would not be found
    • Easily and rapidly deployed and can be managed by subject-matter experts
    • Unified search interface on premises or hybrid for both internal users and project specific partners
    • Ensures users can find and access any site or application that contains the information they need, and are authorized to access the content
    • Enables users to directly access information without having to navigate to a destination to find it
    • Provides users with a holistic view of all the content to which they have access, be it service delivery, knowledge, or business support
    • Content is cleansed, available in the index, and content gaps are eliminated
    • Content is optimized for search through compound term metadata generation, connects people to people and people to content
    Key Benefits

    Key Benefits

    When information access is a business necessity, the inability to find accurate information on-demand can impact the bottom line. Concept Searching’s unique search capabilities, granular expertise location, and collaboration improves the ability to compete successfully.

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    Challenges and Solutions

    Professional Services firms typically have staff that are global, and usually support numerous service offerings within each business unit. With potentially hundreds of communities in diverse geographic areas, supporting different industries, sectors, service lines, and account teams information access must be tailored to both individual and group requirements. Knowledge capital, the protection of content as a business asset, and the ability to access relevant content, are a prerequisite for growth and competitive advantages.

    What are the challenges at a business operational level?

    Solving the big picture challenges comes down to executing day-to-day tasks through a combination of people and technology. At the heart of addressing the big picture challenges, organizations must solve the basic problems that support the overall objectives of the organization.

    The fundamental technology problems that can improve the performance of the organization as a whole include:

    • Search – inability to deliver relevant (content in context), up-to-date content, exclude redundant information, and to accommodate multiple search engines
    • Knowledge Resources – inability to facilitate knowledge sharing and content re-use, providing knowledge workers with a holistic view of all content based on their access rights
    • Collaboration – inability to communicate and collaborate with diverse stakeholders, to ensure all participants have access to the same, up-to-date information available based on their authorized access to the content
    • Hybrid Search – inability to provide a consistent enterprise search interface, regardless of the platform, and address on-premise risks that also apply to the cloud, such as security and records identification
    • Text Analytics– inability to reduce the quantity of information to be analyzed, cleanse the content, and find the precise information needed to make informed decisions and gain insight into content
    • Records Management – inability to accommodate the human factor, typically responsible for tagging and processing documents of record resulting in undeclared records and impacting the information lifecycle of individual pieces of content
    • Security – the inability to define vocabulary and descriptors used for the real-time identification of confidential/data privacy exposures, remove the content from unauthorized access, and prevent its portability
    • eDiscovery and Legal – inability to manage the escalating costs and risks surrounding eDiscovery and litigation support; information cannot be accessed or found because it is either mistagged or not tagged; and the time gap between information requests and discovery is directly proportional to the volume of data, and the longer it takes to find information the more costly that information becomes
    • Migration – inability to migrate content based on semantic metadata tagging to simplify pre-migration activities and improve the organization of content post-migration

    At the crux of all these challenges is metadata. Concept Searching’s intelligent metadata enabled solutions can only be achieved through the automatic generation of multi-term metadata, are specific to the various vocabularies and nomenclature of the organization, and serve as the foundation for any application that requires metadata. This enterprise metadata framework is then used to auto-classify content, and manage it through interactive, yet highly sophisticated, and industry unique taxonomy tools.

    Use Cases

    Concept Searching solutions have been deployed and are being used extensively in the professional services sector. Since the products are not restricted to just solving search challenges, the products reach far beyond to improve any application that requires the use of metadata and establishes the framework for information governance.

    Solving the over-arching and often global challenges, changes are needed at the tactical level using technology, people, and business processes to solve these global objectives, in order to reduce risk, costs, and improve business performance.

    Below are the fundamental challenges our clients have faced followed by information on how they were able to address those challenges.

  • Search

    Search is the lifeblood of professional services firms. Many firms have multiple search engines, multiple applications that require search, and content is stored in dissimilar repositories and not always included in the indexing of content.

    In addition, users are not always adept at constructing queries that will result in high precision and high recall. The Concept Searching product platforms all contain the core component of generating compound term metadata, or concepts in context, auto-classifying the content, and managing content on an on going basis through taxonomy tools. All content can be classified, regardless of the repository or application. The products integrate with any search engine, and offer a range of search features eliminating the burden on the end user to perform reiterative and non-productive searches.

    Case Study

    Improving Search on a Global Intranet

    document-downloadsA full-service engineering, architecture, construction, environmental and consulting solutions firm chose the conceptClassifier for SharePoint platform to power its intranet search. The firm operates globally, with over 3,000 engineers, architects, construction experts, planners, estimators, economists, technicians, and scientists representing virtually all design disciplines. The efficient use and re-use of information was critical to internal collaboration and customer and project support. Concept Searching’s technologies were able to augment the organization’s search process with intelligent tagging, automatic classification and taxonomy management, natively integrated with SharePoint.

    Improving Search on a Customer Facing Website

    A premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications and consumer technology markets deployed the conceptClassifier platform integrated with Solr to deliver taxonomy management, auto-classification and the automatic generation of semantic metadata for its global, revenue generating customer facing portal. Based on post testing, the search results were 97% accurate after implementation. Since this organization provides information for a fee, and is a primary source of revenue generation, the ability to improve search, and therefore revenues, was a business necessity.

  • Case Study

    45,000 Professionals Benefit from Search Enhancements on a Global Knowledge Portal

    document-downloadsOne of the largest, global professional services firms is using conceptClassifier for SharePoint to support its global knowledge portal. The firm delivers audit, financial advisory, tax and consulting services, and key to its activities is the use and re-use of information, and the ability to collaborate across industry and geographic boundaries. The importance of tagging content with appropriate metadata and classifying that content aligned with the business goals was paramount, especially when search needed to be accurate and effective. Not only did conceptClassifier for SharePoint address the metadata challenge, it was the only third-party product available that natively integrated with the SharePoint 2010 Term Store, managed metadata properties and the FAST search engine.

    Knowledge Portal

    Regardless of what term the firm uses, a knowledge resource repository typically exists to capture not only past and current knowledge assets, but also the intellectual assets based on the staff’s expertise and knowledge for re-use and knowledge sharing.

    One of the biggest benefits of the Concept Searching platforms is the ability to aggregated content from file shares, SharePoint, websites, and diverse applications to provide a single point of reference for knowledge workers. Supporting navigational, concept based, and discovery type searches, the user can directly access the information needed or the user can be guided to relevant content, identifying relationships between content, and offering topics and information that typically would not be found.

  • Collaboration

    Collaboration is slowly being recognized as a valid, and valuable, enterprise communication tool. With the cloud also gaining in adoption, the ability to communicate and collaborate in real-time can improve group performance, decision making, and lower costs.

    The advantage is the ability to deliver the most up-to-date information, regardless of its format to the appropriate users. Collaboration, as well as social networking tools, can be used to increase awareness of organizational knowledge, employee induction and training, expertise location, communities of interest, collective intelligence, and innovation management. At a more tactical level, collaboration can be used in project management, elimination of emails, and to communicate securely with a variety of diverse stakeholders. The Concept Searching platforms foster collaboration efforts through the ability to aggregate relevant and precise content, regardless of where it resides, regardless of the format, and ensures that the content is available when needed. In addition, the security of the content asset is verified to eliminate any potential data exposure or breach resulting from unauthorized access.

    Case Study

    Leveraging Knowledge Assets as a Key Business Advantage

    document-downloadsA management consulting firm is using conceptClassifier for SharePoint to power its intranet. Specializing in strategic execution, the company’s use and re-use of knowledge assets is critical to the business. In order to successfully collaborate across the company, it recognized the importance and intrinsic value of automating the tagging and classification of content. Following an evaluation of available technologies, conceptClassifier for SharePoint was selected for both its superior results over competitive products, as well as its native integration with the SharePoint 2010 Term Store.

  • Case Study

    Integrating Social to Enable Expert Identification

    document-downloadsA multinational IT and management consultancy is using conceptClassifier for SharePoint to provide taxonomies, metadata management, and auto-classification for its SharePoint 2007 and 2010 based global intranet. As an outsourcing professional services firm, the ability to find the ideal candidate for projects was becoming a challenge. Concept Searching technology indexes the intranet, My Sites, and the organization’s global publishing repository or ‘library’, and provides auto-classification to organizationally defined taxonomies. Eliminating subjective tagging, content related to a staff member can be accessed at a highly detailed level, ultimately improving customer satisfaction and also decreasing costs associated with staff who are currently not on an engagement.

    Social Content

    Social networking applications have taken a long time to gain their place as legitimate business applications.

    The Concept Searching solutions provide improved social content outcomes by providing insight into content; grouping similar users, concepts, and content together; identifying people with expertise, knowledge or interest in a topic; and protecting and securing confidential information from unauthorized access. A significant benefit is the ability to provide the framework that enables access to relevant and accurate information at a granular level. The end result is a consistent understanding of the value and context of information. It also provides confident cross-organizational decision support capability, shared knowledge, and enterprise availability of knowledge and intellectual assets that increase organizational performance.

  • Text Analytics

    The ability to aggregate very precise information from diverse sources and then analyze them can be invaluable in decision making and reducing costs.

    Data is machine driven, whereas unstructured content is driven by people, which makes the nuances, insights, relationships of disparate content, sentiment, and knowledge capital much more difficult to extract. Using Concept Searching products before analysis, the quantity of content can be reduced through an initial cleansing. Once the ‘noise’ has been eliminated, the ability to analyze the content at a very granular level produces actionable results that can be used to solve problems, reduce costs, and improve decision making.

    Case Study

    From Market Intelligence to Project Implementation

    document-downloadsAn international development organization has implemented conceptClassifier for SharePoint to improve findability of information and eliminate manual tagging processes. An efficient way of capturing and compiling information throughout the lifecycle of the business was needed, from market intelligence to proposal development to project implementation. Concept Searching delivered an integrated solution to access content from many data sources, using its industry unique ‘compound term processing’ to deliver accurate search results through a global intranet. conceptClassifier for SharePoint automatically applies metadata for both repositories, and enables Microsoft search to filter on the semantic metadata to improve findability via related concepts and the use of faceted navigation.

  • Case Study

    Connecting 100,000 Business Professionals in Office 365

    document-downloadsA global professional services firm is deploying Office 365 to support over 100,000 end users across the world. The firm was concerned about information governance in the cloud. Using conceptClassifier for Office 365, they will be able to manage an enterprise information governance strategy that integrates business processes on-premise and in the cloud.


    Moving to the cloud can provide a strong return on investment and enable ubiquitous access for end users regardless of where they are located.

    But moving to a cloud environment, or even a hybrid environment, poses challenges in regards to applying a consistent information governance strategy across all environments. The Concept Searching platforms have been deployed in the cloud, including Office 365 and Amazon Web Services (AWS), and enable effective management of unstructured content by enforcing and extending enterprises’ on-premise information governance policies within the cloud environment. Metadata driven policy actions on content used in search, migration, identifying and securing sensitive information, or in the automatic declaration of documents of record, are some of the key capabilities available in a cloud environment.

  • Information Governance – Records Identification and Security

    Regardless of whether you are using the SharePoint Records Center or a third party application, records management and the lifecycle of documents of record is typically a challenge, in any industry. The biggest stumbling block has always been end user tagging.

    With complex file plans, and the fact that human tagging is often haphazard at best, organizations can often unwittingly fall into the trap of non-compliance. The Concept Searching platforms, are being used to automatically identify documents of record, auto-classify the content to a taxonomy that mirrors the file plan and route it directly to the records management application.

    Sensitive, confidential, and data privacy information exists in documents, scanned items, faxed items, emails, and could be in any unstructured or semi-structured content. The Concept Searching platforms provide the ability to automatically identify, secure, and prohibit portability of content using organizationally defined vocabulary and descriptors. Since the metadata generation is not restricted to keywords, it is highly accurate in identifying potential security exposures, in real-time, as content is ingested or created. It is then automatically routed to a secure repository for disposition. Full support for standard descriptors is included. Additional value is provided through the ability for the organization or functional group to define confidential information that falls outside of standard descriptors.

    Case Study

    Effective information Governance Enterprise Wide

    document-downloadsA global, integrated design firm, needed an effective way to catalogue the information stored on its intranet, to make sure it was accessible to different parts of the organization. It wanted a way to organize multiple taxonomies into a logical collection of managed metadata that could then be used across its numerous SharePoint site collections.
    This consistent search experience acted as the key component for all its governance efforts the organization. The company implemented conceptClassifier for SharePoint to maximize the effectiveness of taxonomies, producing an enhanced search experience and effective governance including security and identification of documents of record. In addition, with no previous training, the organization was able to create global taxonomies within just a couple of weeks.

    Why Metadata Matters to You


    The CIO or CTO in any industry faces both strategic and tactical challenges. In the professional services sector the responsibilities are broad and challenging. The strategic challenges must be carefully addressed with a focus on the impact at a tactical level. Budgetary constraints can change the priorities and force a ‘pick and choose’ philosophy to improve performance. One of the key differentiators in the Concept Searching platforms is the re-usability of the core technologies, to solve multiple content management and business process challenges. This provides a cost benefit in terms of elimination of separate solutions to address key application challenges, a reduction in staff to implement and maintain the applications, and transparent usability from the end user perspective. The flexibilty of the intelligent metadata enabled solutions can address search, records management, eliminate data privacy and data breaches, provide intelligent migration, social media applications, text analytics capabilities, and over all content management. The ability to leverage the existing infrastructure to improve these challenges assists the CIO/CTO in addressing multiple issues concurrently. An additional key component in the Concept Searching platforms is the ability to deploy in an on-premise environment, cloud, or hybrid environment.

    Knowledge Managers/Librarians/Taxonomists

    The management of knowledge is a significant and on-going task for knowledge managers, librarians, or taxonomy specialists. With content continually in a state of flux, the management of knowledge necessitates a multi-dimensional approach to capture, make available, share, and maximize the value of content, to achieve organizational knowledge. Managed effectively, this leverages content assets as well as captures intellectual assets which ultimately drives innovation. Using conceptTaxonomyManager, a core component in all platforms, the tools for development and management of taxonomies. Designed for Subject Matter Experts, the interactive tools provides an easy-to-use interactive interface. The product provides a rules-based engine that eliminates the need for training sets and highly specialized human resources and is unique to conceptTaxonomyManager. Other unique features in the product include automatic taxonomy node clue suggestion, dynamic screen updating to immediately see the impact of changes in the taxonomy, and document movement feedback to see cause and effect of changes without re-indexing.

    Knowledge Users

    In professional services firms, knowledge users are predominant and have diverse responsibilities. The need to access relevant information to their specific role not only increases productivity but also contributes to organizational profitability. This can be a challenge to determine the appropriate content for services offerings, as well as addressing the needs of multiple communities, geographies, locations, industries, sectors, service lines, and account teams who all need information that is relevant to them. Because of the ability to generate compound term metadata that represents a concept, the ambiguity in search is removed. Eliminating the presence of subjective and erroneous metadata, metadata is automatically generated and classified to the taxonomies where it can be managed and refined. Working with any search engine, the metadata is fed to the search index to enable concept based search across the organization. Users no longer need to know ‘how to search’ as the combination of the metadata and taxonomies can return relevant information, or guide them to the information they need. Since the products aggregate content from diverse repositories, users are provided with a holistic view of content regardless of where it resides.

    Project Teams, Account Teams, Managers

    The ability to share information via collaboration across global locations in real time reduces the possibility of error and redundancy in emails, and locates the most current documentation. Effective collaboration and knowledge capture can also achieve benefits to an organization in applications such as project management, awareness of organizational knowledge, employee induction and training, expertise location, communities of interest, collective intelligence, and innovation management. The Concept Searching technologies provide insight into content; grouping similar users, concepts, and content together; and identifying people with expertise, and knowledge or interest in a topic. The end result is consistent understanding of the value and context of information. It also provides confident cross-organizational decision support capability, shared knowledge, and the enterprise-wide availability of knowledge, to increase organizational performance.

    Information Technology Professionals

    Regardless of whether you are a SharePoint Administrator, or the CTO, Concept Searching technologies make your management of metadata easy. Integrated natively with the SharePoint Term Store, Concept Searching platforms remove the manual processes of metadata management, eliminates end user adoption issues, and aligns IT with business objectives. Installed quickly and easily, you can start classifying content in a matter of hours. Without a taxonomy expert on staff, the interactive, powerful, yet easy-to-use taxonomy tools can be used by business or IT professionals. Organizations can build an enterprise metadata repository and provide the re-usable technology to improve any application that requires the use of metadata.

    Security Professionals

    Since information is the lifeblood of professional services firms, the organization is highly vulnerable to internal and external data privacy exposures and breaches, where repercussions can be costly and damage the brand of the organization. In fact, organizations are now being held legally liable for personal social media postings, if they originated from within the organization. The value of the Concept Searching platforms is the ability for the organization to define what is confidential information and should be protected, either internally or externally. Standard descriptors such as social security number are included in the base product. The value achieved is content that is deemed confidential is easily added to address specific organizational requirements. Content containing the vocabulary or descriptors is automatically flagged at creation or ingestion and routed to a secure repository, made unavailable during the search process by unauthorized users, and protected against portability.

    Records Managers

    In records management eliminating end user tagging, automatic application of content types, and routing of the document of record to the records management application reduces organizational risk, and improves information lifecycle management. Concept Searching product platforms eliminate end user tagging and automates document workflow for storage, preservation, access, and usage controls, and automatically enforces protection of the records integrity throughout the individual document lifecycle eliminating many of the fundamental obstacles faced by records professionals on a day-to-day basis.

    Legal and H/R Professionals

    Legal teams, litigation support, and Human Resource (HR) professionals all need quick, easy, and rapid access to relevant information. The key is to facilitate the search process and reduce unproductive queries to try to ‘find’ the relevant information. HR must also ensure that the organization protects the privacy of all staff and eliminates any exposure that increases the risk of potential litigation. Legal needs to ensure the security of content assets from unauthorized access and portability, before an exposure occurs. Since information is retrieved by identifying concepts the legal or HR professional can eliminate complex queries and through vocabulary normalization, ambiguities are eliminated and related content is identified even though the specific vocabulary wasn’t specified in the query.

    Compliance Professionals

    Professional services firms often cross global boundaries, and additional security and compliance mandates are critical to the process of managing the compliance challenges associated with unstructured information. The drain on resources and time is enormous, making it difficult to keep abreast of mandates and multinational content asset protection. The value of the Concept Searching platforms is the ability to rapidly develop information governance and compliance rules that can immediately identify any compliance violations at the time of content creation or ingestion. These violations can then be flagged and automatically routed to a repository for disposition.

    Social Networking Specialists

    Using social networking applications is both an internal and external communication and knowledge sharing vehicle. Done correctly, the benefits in both scenarios delivers value to the organization. On the internal side, social networking applications often do not have a framework that is robust enough to encourage participation or delivers value. End user participation is typically very low unless it brings individual value to assist in increasing personal productivity. With new search features putting control of social interactions in the hands of the end users, organizational performance is not effectively improved and is  often the reason for failure. Providing structure and the ability to aggregate highly relevant, precise, and granular content from within a social networking application encourages participation and leverages not only knowledge assets but also intellectual assets, and corporate memory.