Research published this week on the effects of COVID-19 on search in the enterprise. People often use search engines to resolve some level of uncertainty. Patterns in enterprise search logs may therefore yield insights in extreme situations such as a pandemic and lockdowns. These data could be used by organisations to assess the effectiveness of communications, levels of uncertainty & anxiety amongst staff and to make interventions.
A case study in a knowledge-intensive organisation was undertaken on 2.5 Million search queries during the pandemic. A surge of unique users and COVID-19 search queries in March 2020 may equate to ‘peak uncertainty and activity’ demonstrating the importance of corporate search engines in times of crisis.
Search volumes dropped 24% after lockdowns, an ‘L shaped’ recovery may be a surrogate for business activity. COVID-19 search queries transitioned from awareness, to impact, strategy, response, and ways of working that may influence future search design. Low clickthrough rates imply some information needs were not met and searches on mental health increased.
Available OpenAccess in the Journal of Information Science: Impact of COVID-19 on search in an organisation – Paul H Cleverley, Fionnuala Cousins, Simon Burnett, 2021 (sagepub.com)
#research #search #covid19 #business #digital #digitalworkspace #intranet #bigdata #searchengine #knowledgemanagement