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Business Information Review

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The Boss Just Said "Do More With Less!": The Business Information Survey 2010   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Key findings from a Survey of corporate business information services based on in-depth interviews with leading information and knowledge managers: 1. More global coordination and control of distributed information services function, including content purchasing, driven by financial and organizational pressures 2. Tough business climate has forced changes in the direction and activities of many companies, with consequential impact on information and research services 3. More management scrutiny of information services costs and benefits 4. Eighty-five per cent of respondents reported a downturn in content budgets and/or staffing numbers. The average reduction in content is 13 per cent and in staff 10 per cent. 5. Increasing and imaginative ways that information services are adding value including undertaking analytical financial and market work 6. Twenty per cent of respondents have outsourced or off-shored some of their information functions. More are considering this option including, for the first time, law firms 7. Knowledge sharing is higher on the agendas of some companies 8. Deployment of innovative techniques such as the use of stories to disseminate good practice and knowledge sharing 9. The business benefits of the use of social media is still doubted by some companies 10. Blogging, wikis and personal networking tools are being used to a greater or lesser extent by 80 per cent of respondents.

Foster, Allan. Business Information Review (2010). Articles>Information Design>Management


Business Directories: The Cinderellas of the Business Information World   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

In a world where there is so much emphasis on electronic information, and expensive reports, it is useful to be reminded that for certain topics there may be information in other sources that is valuable too. In this article, Neil Infield draws attention to business directories as important sources of information that are sometimes neglected.

Infield, Neil. Business Information Review (2009). Articles>Directories>Business Communication


Business Information Survey   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Survey of business information services in corporate information services, based on in-depth interviews with leading business information managers. Key findings are: Business information budgets have been stable, with at least inflationary increases built in; Business conditions have been turbulent of late but this has had no real impact on the services to date; With more information rolled out to the clients' desktops, the services are all working to add value through a variety of approaches, including training, evaluation and analysis, business and client development, and generally undertaking more complex work; Some pressure on the staffing headcount in the services during the year; Recruiting suitable information professionals is a difficult process; Offshoring information and research work has not expanded significantly but more companies are considering this option; 'Techno-centric' knowledge management remains important in some companies, particularly law firms, but is fading as a practice in others; There is great interest and envisaged potential in social technology and Web 2.0 tools and techniques -- but not much serious deployment yet; Even in mature corporate information environments, marketing business information services is still seen as crucial by 90 per cent of respondents; Fifty-five percent of the services provide some kind of competitor information function, albeit not at a high level; A significant majority (75 per cent) of services support compliance functions such as 'Know your client' and anti-money laundering checks; Existing copyright provisions are seen as a barrier to effective information dissemination within companies by 80 per cent of respondents; LexisNexis takes over at the top of the expenditure league; The demand for information on Asian business markets is growing; Almost all services are committed to training users in the discovery and use of digital business information sources; The organization, management, and sometimes realignment of services is the highest strategic priority.

Foster, Allan. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Business Communication>Information Design


Business Information Through Spain’s Chambers of Commerce: Meeting Business Needs   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

From different public and private requirements, mechanisms have been set in action that allow for companies to obtain information in order to make decisions with a stronger foundation. This article is focused on the description of an entire information system for the business world, developed in the realm of the Chambers of Commerce of Spain, which has given rise to the creation of an authentic network of inter-chamber information. In Spain, the obligatory membership of businesses to the Chambers of Commerce in their geographic areas, and therefore the compulsory payment of member quotas, has traditionally generated some polemics, above all because many firms have not perceived a material usefulness of the services offered by these Chambers. Notwithstanding, the 85 Chambers currently existing in Spain, as well as the organization that coordinates them – the Upper Council or Consejo Superior de Cámaras de Comercio – and the company created expressly to commercialize information services online, Camerdata, have developed genuinely informative tools that cover a good part of the information demands that a business might claim, and these are described here.

Cañavate, Antonio Muñoz and Pedro Hípola. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Business Communication>Case Studies>Europe


Catalyzing Innovation and Knowledge Sharing   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Generation Y are the first generation to fully put the process of ‘prosumption’ into practice. Individuals are proactively seeking to generate and share creative outputs as a result of their online activities, and this produces a set of fundamental questions for business librarians, information management specialists and consultants: does our profession adhere to a logic of service-delivery, which is rapidly becoming obsolete in the context of service-innovation. Suggestions for how information specialists (called librarian 2.0 in this article) can participate in the creation of value for users are offered.

Cullen, John T. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Management>Knowledge Management>Information Design


The Changing Nature of Commercial Research   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

In this article, Nigel Spencer compares and contrasts his experience of delivering fee-based business information research from 1987 to 2008. Although the article is written from the perspective of the British Library priced research services, many points made could also apply to the changing role of the business information professional.

Spencer, Nigel. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Research>Business Communication>United Kingdom


The Chief Executive Officer (CEO)'s Guide to Growth in Challenging Economic Times   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

In this article Jamie Dickinson outlines the seven strategic steps to delivering growth in a market downturn. This is a framework for CEOs to follow when times are hard, but they still need to deliver growth. It also applies to all managers who support the CEOs' ultimate objectives.

Dickinson, Jamie. Business Information Review (2009). Articles>Management


Company Research: Effects of Recent European Union Company Legislation   (members only)

A considerable amount of company legislation has been added to the European Union (EU) statute book in the last few years. There have also been many initiatives to modernize existing law. Much of the legislation affects every type of company, but some is specific to listed companies, securities markets and financial institutions. It is all very significant for business information professionals, who need to follow these changes, monitor developments and understand the impact on their day-to-day work. This article reviews the major EU company legislation that has been implemented recently and looks at some calls for further controls on company activities and practices. Following a brief review of all the legislation, with links and references for further study, the main part of the article describes the effects and implications for the ongoing and future work of business information professionals.

James, Sylvia. Business Information Review (2007). Articles>Business Communication>Legislation>Europe


Competitive Advantage and its Conceptual Development   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

This article explores the competitive advantage of businesses. Current understanding of competitive advantage arises from the strategic management paradigm. However, the early theory that underpins this comes from optimising economic theory, the inadequacy of which led to the resource-based view. The next development came from knowledge management, which sees knowledge as a valuable strategic resource recognizing the need to look more inside the organization qualitatively. However, a new paradigm has arisen that couples knowledge processes with cybernetics. This recognizes that achieving competitive advantage requires that an organization’s pathologies must be recognized and addressed.

Yolles, Maurice. Business Information Review (2009). Articles>Management>Knowledge Management


Compleat Compliance: Due Diligence on Companies and Individuals   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Explains how recent legislation and the effects of corporate scandals have necessitated greater due diligence on companies and individuals. Gives details of relevant existing and forthcoming legislation and discusses how a due diligence process can ensure compliance with the law. Points out that prospective clients, employees and investors may all require investigation, and then reviews some of the information sources available for use in both corporate and individual investigations. Considers the impact of international developments, particularly in the light of increased merger and acquisition activity, and discusses some of the barriers to acquiring effective due diligence. Finally considers the applicability of selected commercial databases.

Ainsworth, Martin. Business Information Review (2007). Articles>Business Communication>Databases>Regulation


The Contemporary Library and Information Services Manager   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

The contemporary Library and Information Services (LIS) environment employs a multifaceted group of employees who are better educated and more expensive to recruit than in previous times. In order to maximize these talents and resources available, this modern setting requires managers — at all levels — who are versatile and fitted out with the right skills and knowledge to maintain group cohesion and to propel this dynamic environment to continuously move in unison with the society. This article identifies and discusses the required skills and knowledge of the contemporary manager. In doing so, the concepts of skill and knowledge are defined and their interrelationship is highlighted.

Knight, Jeannine. Business Information Review (2009). Careers>Knowledge Management


Copyright for Corporate Information Professionals: Staying Within the Law   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Considers the role of copyright in the dissemination of information within the corporate sector. Examines the various forms of authorization available for companies using copyright-protected content to ensure compliance with copyright law. Discusses the distinction the law makes between copying for a commercial purpose as opposed to copying for a non-commercial purpose. Looks at the limited scope for businesses to rely on the copyright exceptions to justify their copying, particularly fair dealing. Considers licensing as a way of being able to do more than the copying exceptions would allow, and the interrelationship between contract law and copyright law. Outlines some copyright legal cases and the lessons we can learn from them. Sets out examples of copying activities that should be avoided if one wants to reduce the risk of being accused of copyright infringement.

Pedley, Paul. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Intellectual Property>Copyright>Workplace


Creative Career Development: An Entrepreneur's Guide   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

As a small business owner specializing in recruitment, I am often asked for advice about securing work or developing a career in the current marketplace. In this article I look at business approaches I have adopted for developing my own company that can be used when conducting a job search. Whether you are a new graduate looking for your first professional role, are facing a redundancy situation or looking to develop in your current role the current economic climate should be treated as an opportunity to grow. Some of the best business ventures have been born out of a recession. Likewise developing or changing career now can leave you in a stronger position and ready to take opportunities when the market place recovers. Start to take a more entrepreneurial approach to developing your career and opportunities can and will present themselves.

Gray, Keri. Business Information Review (2009). Careers>Management


Demystifying Chinese Guanxi Networks: Cultivating and Sharing of Knowledge for Business Benefit   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Guanxi referrals help identify potential business partners. Through guanxi networks, businesses can establish favourable and mutually beneficial relationships vital to business success. Guanxi carries assumed knowledge of trust and facilitates business references. It is the construct of `face' that underpins this trust. The high degree of trust in guanxi networks facilitates the flow of strategic information and knowledge, further adding value to business. This article illustrates through case studies how guanxi relationships are formed and how knowledge in guanxi networks can benefit business. The case studies are drawn from experiences of three Europe-based Chinese business directors.

Chan, Ben. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Business Communication>Knowledge Management>Collaboration


Developing an Information Management Strategy: The Foundation Stone for an EDRMS   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

All too often organizations have a fragmented approach to Information Management Documents/data is duplicated in many places and users are expected to enter the same information many times. Developing an Information Management Strategy is the foundation stone that should be in place before considering cost justifying or implementing Electronic Document and Records Management System (EDRMS).

Waldron, Martin. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Knowledge Management>Information Design>Databases


Developing Trends and Challenges for the Information Industry Examined in the Context of the Online Information Conference   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

This paper examines emerging trends in the information industry that are likely to be of interest to information professionals during 2008. These include web 2.0, enterprise 2.0, social networking, semantic web, risk management, user-generated content, universal search, crowdsourcing and new roles for information professionals.

Allen, Katherine. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Information Design>Web Design>Planning


Does Copyright Have a Future? Can the Lawlessness of the Internet be Tamed?   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

The Internet has been a frontier, and like many frontiers, a fundamentally lawless place. One of the early casualties was copyright. As a society, we have to decide whether we are willing to allow lawlessness on the global network to continue, or whether the Internet should be brought within the structures of civil society. One element is the renewal of proper respect for copyright. In creating the ACAP project, the publishing media have recognized that it is essential to work with technology, not against it, developing mechanisms to manage copyright in business relationships at machine to machine level. The time has come to tame the frontier, and allow the media to develop appropriate business models for the 21st Century.

Bide, Mark. Business Information Review (2009). Articles>Intellectual Property>Copyright


Engaging with Social Media in the Business and Intellectual Property Centre (BIPC) at the British Library   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

In this article, Neil Infield shares with us the way in which the BIPC has successfully used social media to reach its diverse audience of inventors, entrepreneurs and small business owner.

Infield, Neil. Business Information Review (2009). Articles>Business Communication>Social Networking>Case Studies


Enterprise 2.0: What's Your Game Plan? What, If Any, Will Be the Role of the Information Intermediary?   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

In a world where organizations are increasingly adopting Enterprise 2.0 technology what, if any, will be the role of the information intermediary? Where can information intermediaries add value in their organizations and how can they ride and harness the wave of new technologies that spring up on a seemingly daily basis? Is this a period of boom or bust?

Marfleet, Jackie. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Management>Knowledge Management>Planning


Ethics and Information   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

This article gives a detailed encyclopedic overview of the many areas and concepts that fall within the domain of information ethics. Thus, it offers brief synoptic remarks on, for example, privacy and peer review, rather than in-depth discussions of these topics, many of which have generated thousands of studies, articles, and monographic treatments.

Hauptman, Robert. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Information Design>Privacy>Ethics


Expanding the Boundaries of an Information Service: The British Library's Meetings with Inventors   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

The range of interesting jobs, and accompanying job titles, in the information world has increased dramatically. In this issue’s column we hear from the British Library’s first Inventor in Residence about the work he does to encourage innovation.

Sheahan, Mark. Business Information Review (2010). Articles>Information Design>Case Studies>United Kingdom


From a Business and Science Search Firm   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Discusses some principles of managing an information search firm and their similarities to managing corporate libraries. Compares information search firms to other professional service firms. Describes the evolution of one small business and science information search firm. Gives insights into managing customer service and client relationships, quality control and processes, risk taking and professional growth. Touches on David Maister's theory of the quality experience and Michael Gerber's idea of the role of the entrepreneur vs the technician in small start-up businesses.

Lesky, Cynthia. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Content Management>Knowledge Management>Search


Harnessing Collective Expertise: Delivering Market and Client Intelligence Research Within a Law Firm   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Explains how a leading global law firm manages its market and client research. Outlines the firm's divisions, business activities and client base. Explains in detail how the firm uses business research, covering use of market intelligence on the business issues that an individual client faces, and the gathering of intelligence about the client, to disclose the nature and extent of the firm's ambitions to advise the organization concerned. Discusses the staffing of a law firm's business research capability, pointing out that not only staff expertise but also confidentiality concerns mean that it is not always efficient for lawyers to access internal and external information sources directly. Suggests that defining the minimum business research necessary improves the usefulness of the information delivered and saves the firm time -- and that removing the uncertainty about what is required improves job satisfaction as well.

Blaxland, Diane. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Business Communication>Legal>Collaboration


If You Want Something Done, Ask a Busy Person   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Effective use of personal time management skills and techniques can ensure a successful balance between work and personal life. This article suggests ways of analysing how time is spent, and offers advice on making plans for the future in a business and personal environment.

Byrne, Una. Business Information Review (2008). Articles>Project Management>Workflow


Ignorance Management   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

This article examines the underlying requirements for successful Knowledge Management. The basic building blocks of operational excellence, namely transparency, accountability, appropriate experience and managing through metrics, must be in place for any Knowledge Management programme to realize its potential. The article also points out that an honest evaluation of your company's ability to achieve transparency and assign appropriate accountability and metrics can be extremely powerful.

Rivinus, Chris. Business Information Review (2010). Articles>Knowledge Management>Business Communication



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