Desperately seeking information

I recently conducted a survey of 55 business professionals to identify what channels they use to seek information. The pie chart below illustrates the role of the Internet (purples), internal search tools (oranges), the importance of direct people to people interactions (green) and minimal use of traditional ‘library’ services (blue). The fact that almost a quarter of all business information seeking appears to take place on the Internet should perhaps be of significance to corporate information literacy programmes and strategies.

Information Seeking Channels Pie Chart

It is possible that the survey may underestimate the proportion of people-people interactions, as this may be below the levels of consciousness for most professionals. Conversely, the extent to which we use software tools may be overestimated, with several studies showing self report may overestimate use of social media technologies by 550% (Junco 2012). There is also evidence in the enterprise of self reported usage overestimation for enterprise search tools by over 200% (Cleverley 2014).

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