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Everything you need to know about enterprise search

by Casey Schmidt  |  January 22, 2020

3 min. read
Someone using a laptop to search.

Enterprise search is beneficial for a wide range of companies because it gives users within the business the chance to search quickly for different information and files. It boosts efficiency and reduces the need for endless file searches. Here’s a guide to explain what it does and show why it’s necessary.

What is an enterprise search?

Enterprise search is a company’s way of creating searchable content practices for their target audience. It takes data files from numerous databases, increasing the time it takes for a user to locate a file. It is essentially a bringing together of all a company’s information hubs, allowing one search to retrieve results from all areas.

Think of enterprise search like a library. Imagine a particular library has movies, music and books. A customer wants to find a book about whales, a movie about dinosaurs and a CD by Beethoven. Now imagine that in order for the librarian to assist this customer in their search, they needed to create a query into three different computer systems, one for each section (movies, books, CDs). This would be quite the hassle. Similar to an enterprise search, the ideal situation would have the librarian need only make searches within a singular system that pulls information from all three categories.

A multi-level library.
Sometimes these intensive searches are similar to libraries.

Who uses enterprise search?

Every company has different levels of access for their system. The answer to this question really depends on who has access to a company, such as their website. An employee may access the company website or email system and search for a particular file or piece of data. Similarly, an administrator may do the same but with higher levels of access.

The varying access streamlines searches and serves users with the files most important to them. Essentially, enterprise search cuts through unnecessary data results and ensures delivery of fast answers and files to the users who actually need them. It also restricts sensitive data from unwarranted users.

A computer accessing email.
Sometimes data from email systems is needed.

Why is enterprise search necessary?

There are a lot of important reasons enterprise search is necessary. For starters, it creates a more versatile range of discovery for the company and its many users, team members, and administrators. It does this by allowing for searches in different locations and on numerous devices. The benefits of this are self-explanatory, since most companies deal with externals who work remotely and team members who might extend their working hours past the workday often.

Another way this type of search is so valuable is its ability to essentially unify all different company data locations. For example, say a team member is researching information about a new client. Without extensive search ability, their gathered data about said client is bound to be limited by whichever paths they choose to search on. An enterprise search, however, will bring together things such as email systems, cloud file storage, the company website and more. The chances of that client information being complete are drastically improved. This is only a small sample of the ways this powerful function helps companies.

A person in front of a large digital cloud.
Detailed searches pull from things such as cloud storage servers.

Enterprise search software

Now that you have a good understanding of the importance of enterprise search, here are some established systems that might benefit you.

IBM Watson Explorer

IBM Watson Explorer uses machine learning and AI principles to assist in their enterprise search. It is a very complete system that companies, especially larger enterprises, will benefit from.


Swiftype is a trusted tool that focuses squarely on providing users with a search that is not only fast but is also highly secure.

Elastic Enterprise Search

Elastic has created a program that aims to benefit team members who struggle with technology. This tool has a simple interface and makes the typical searches users do a lot easier every time.

Think of enterprise search as a way to bring all your potential data together and feed it to the right people at the right time. As you implement one of these powerful tools, continue to find new ways to improve as a company as a result. The possibilities are truly endless.