A new Forrester Wave report provides an in-depth evaluation of the top cognitive search platforms available today that can help organizations efficiently connect employees to the knowledge they need. With AI advancements like large language models taking cognition to new heights, interest in cognitive search solutions has surged. What should you look for as you evaluate options to empower your workforce?
Understanding User Intent is Key
A cognitive search platform should understand both static details about users, like their role and access permissions, as well as dynamic context like recent queries. This powers the ability to retrieve the most useful, tailored results. Forrester singled out Coveo and Sinequa as leaders in this capability.
Flexibility in Indexing and Query Methods
With innovations in areas like knowledge graphs and vector databases, enterprises need search platforms that offer multiple indexing and querying options beyond just keywords. This allows matching different search methods to use case needs. Lucidworks scored well here for its hybrid lexical-vector approach.
Connecting to Data Wherever it Resides
Robust connectors are crucial for tapping into enterprise information silos—whether databases, cloud apps, or proprietary industry data formats. OpenText stood out to analysts with support for connecting myriad data types. But specialized vertical data needs may call for niche player strengths like Sinequa’s manufacturing connectors.
Understanding Results in Context
Search accuracy depends on automatically tuning to provide documents relevant to each user’s context. Squirro was recognized in this area for features like continuously aligning content to all applicable indexes to ensure matches. Glean also got high marks for self-tuning abilities.
Customization Options for Developers
Elastic and Lucidworks both allow deep customization atop open source foundations so developers can tailor search apps to business requirements. But also key are abstractions that allow less technical users to benefit from platform capabilities. This remains an opportunity area for most evaluated.
Emerging Focus on Large Language Models
Integrating capacities like text generation and summarization powered by LLMs into search promises more intuitive experiences. Coveo and Sinequa’s roadmaps stood out to Forrester for plans to address key issues like citing sources. Microsoft also gained attention for its partnership with OpenAI.
As advances in AI transform search expectations, matching a platform to both immediate and emerging needs is an evolving art. Forrester’s evaluation provides useful perspectives on top vendor strengths and weak spots to inform selection. Continuous learning will be required to stay on top of the cognitive search wave.