Best Enterprise Search Software 2024

Best Enterprise Search Software 2024

Portrait of Jess Cheung Lark's Author
Portrait of Jess Cheung Lark's Author

Jess Cheung

December 16, 2023


Dec 16, 2023


8 min read

Whether you're in a bustling office or a frontline worker in the field, the quest for the right piece of information is universal. Heaps of files, that nagging feeling of déjà vu ("Have I created this document before?"), and the endless quest for that elusive link. It's not just frustrating; it's a productivity sinkhole.

Unlike the casual Googling we do for everything under the sun, enterprise search software is like having a personal information butler, serving up exactly what you need, right when you need it. In this blog, we'll dive into enterprise search software and learn how they can help employees get out of the maze. 🔍

The Price of Information Scavenging in the Workplace

Not having the right information to work with is akin to sailing without a compass, and the numbers paint a startling picture of the loss when employees cannot find the right information.

The cost of not having proper enterprise search software or any search solutions for work is steep. Research shows employees spend 60% of their time on "work about work," including searching for files, leading to only 27% of their time being spent on actual work. An average employee spends 9 hours per week looking for information, costing larger companies with 1000 employees about $2.5 million annually. The annual cost per employee for wasted time searching is $7,000.

Work about Work

Asana’s Anatomy of Work Index research found that employees spend 60% of their time on "work about work," which includes tasks such as searching for files. Consequently, only 27% of their time is actually spent on the jobs they were hired to do, while employees believe they’ve only spent 35% of their time on “work for work.”

The Time (and Money) We Lose

A study by McKinsey revealed that an average employee spends about 9 hours per week searching for information, amounting to roughly 30% of their work time. This staggering figure not only hampers productivity but also translates into significant financial losses for businesses.

McKinsey estimated that in larger companies with, say, 1000 employees, this inefficiency could lead to approximately $2.5 million in annual losses. Academic research on technology and organizational change also showed that searching for people and information is among the top cost-consuming time wasters, with an estimated annual cost of $7,000 per employee.

The Sunk Cost Behind

This inefficiency is more than just a time sink. It's a cascade of lost opportunities and diminished productivity. The absence of enterprise search software not only delays tasks but also impacts the ability to make informed decisions. In an era where speed and accuracy are paramount, these delays can be costly.

The cost of not implementing this technology is clear: lost time, reduced efficiency, hindered progress, and lost opportunities.

Why Enterprise Search Software Matters

The absence of enterprise search software might not just be a minor inconvenience; it can become a significant obstacle to productivity and effective decision-making. Enterprise search software can transform the daunting task of sifting through piles of files into a smooth process.

Enterprise search software improves productivity by providing quick, accurate access to relevant information, enhancing knowledge management, boosting collaboration, and facilitating data-driven decision-making.

1. Knowledge Management: Turning Data into Gold

Imagine the ability to transform all your organization's data into actionable insights. That's the power of effective knowledge management with enterprise search software. It's like having an information genie in your digital lamp.

Consider a pharmaceutical company with years of research data. Enterprise search software allows scientists to quickly find relevant research papers or clinical trial results, transforming vast data pools into valuable insights.

2. Supercharged Productivity: More Time for What Matters

Ever felt like you're endlessly searching for that one document? Enterprise search software can reduce this search time to seconds, significantly boosting productivity.

Take a marketing team as an example. Instead of spending hours weekly sifting through past campaign data, the enterprise search software can help find specific campaign result sheets within seconds, freeing up time for creative brainstorming and strategy development.

3. The Hybrid Workplace: Peak Inclusivity

In the hybrid world of office and remote work, enterprise search software bridges the gap. It makes every team member, regardless of their location, feel included. It's a portal to collective knowledge, ensuring no one feels left out.

For instance, in a hybrid work setup, a project manager in New York can instantly access updates from a developer in Tokyo. Enterprise search software ensures that geographical barriers don't inhibit access to real-time project data.

4. A Multitool for the Digital Age

Enterprise search software is more than a search tool; it's a digital workplace multitool. It can function as an instant employee directory or a lifeline for customer support teams, acting as the Swiss Army knife of the digital era.

An example: For customer support teams, enterprise search software serves as an instant knowledge base, allowing them to quickly access product information or troubleshooting guides, thereby enhancing customer satisfaction.

5. The Single Source of Truth: Eliminating Information Overload

Tired of navigating through a sea of duplicate files? Enterprise search software creates a single, up-to-date source of truth for all your crucial documents, bringing order to chaos. For instance, in a financial firm, enterprise search software can quickly bring up the latest regulatory guidelines or market reports, ensuring decisions are based on the most current and accurate information.

6. Collaboration and Communication: Seamless and Effortless

Enterprise search software facilitates such a smooth flow of information that collaboration and communication become almost effortless. It's like having a knowledge superhighway, making every information exchange quick and easy. For a global team working on a product launch, enterprise search software enables seamless sharing of designs, market research, and launch plans, ensuring all team members are aligned.

When chosen and utilized correctly, enterprise search software is not just a tool; it's your personal information butler, serving up knowledge on demand.

Behind the Search Bar: How Does Enterprise Search Software Work?

Indexing Data - Your Digital Librarian

Imagine your enterprise search software as a meticulous librarian who categorizes every book (in our case, digital files and data) in the grand library (your entire corporate data ecosystem). This librarian doesn't just organize books by titles; they delve deep into the content, categorizing everything from themes to individual phrases.

Similarly, enterprise search software indexes data from sources like file systems, intranets, document management systems, emails, databases, and even active directories. This creates a comprehensive and navigable index that becomes the foundation of your digital treasure hunt.

Querying Data - The Art of Asking

Here comes the magic of asking the right question. When you type a query into the enterprise search software, it's not just about matching keywords. This software understands the context and nuances of your query, much like a savvy assistant who knows exactly what you're looking for, even when you can't articulate it perfectly.

It uses sophisticated algorithms to interpret your query, considering factors like your role, your search history, and even the patterns of information usage within your organization.

Displaying Data - The Grand Reveal

Finally, the big moment: displaying the results. This isn't just a list of documents or links. The enterprise search software presents the most relevant information, often with summaries and key excerpts, making it easier to judge whether you've hit the jackpot. It's like your information butler who not only brings you the book but also opens it to the exact page you need.

This sophisticated process, powered by artificial intelligence and machine learning, ensures that the enterprise search software is not just a search tool but a smart partner in your daily quest for information. It's about cutting through the clutter and bringing you the treasure of information, neatly and efficiently, so you can conquer your workday with more ease and less frustration.

Exploring Different Types of Enterprise Search Software

The world of enterprise search software is as varied and vibrant as the data it organizes. Each software type contributes its unique touch to data retrieval, akin to diverse adventurers each possessing individual skills and tools. There's considerable overlap, particularly as many enterprise search applications begin to incorporate AI capabilities.

1. The Comprehensive Explorers

Consider this type of enterprise search software as an all-terrain vehicle for data exploration. It's designed to navigate every digital landscape within an organization, from dense forests of emails to mountain ranges of databases. This type of enterprise search software is the preferred choice for businesses looking for a comprehensive solution to traverse their entire data ecosystem.

2. The Specialized Scouts

Just like scouts who are experts in specific terrains, there are enterprise search software tools that specialize in certain types of data or industries. These are the tools you turn to when you need a guide who knows the intricate pathways of legal documents or the hidden trails of technical databases. Their specialized knowledge makes them invaluable for organizations with specific enterprise search needs.

3. The AI-Enhanced Mavericks

AI has revolutionized enterprise search software, turning them into mavericks of the data world. These AI-powered enterprise search tools use advanced algorithms, natural language processing, and machine learning to not just find data, but to understand and even anticipate your enterprise search needs. They adapt, learn, and evolve, offering an enterprise search experience that's as dynamic and intelligent as the businesses they serve.

4. The Collaborative Connectors

Some enterprise search software specializes in knitting together the human network within an organization. These tools excel in environments where teamwork and shared knowledge are paramount. They are the digital equivalents of social coordinators, adept at weaving through networks of internal communications and team collaborations, making them perfect for enterprise search scenarios that rely heavily on collective expertise.

5. The Cloud Connoisseurs

As more businesses take to the cloud, more enterprise search software are now cloud-based. These cloud connoisseurs are specialized in sailing through the vast oceans of cloud-based data. For businesses immersed in the cloud environment, these enterprise search software tools offer seamless integration and the ability to deftly navigate across multiple cloud services.

The evolution of enterprise search software, driven by AI, is not just about enhancing search capabilities. It's about transforming these tools into intelligent partners, capable of guiding businesses through the ever-expanding universe of digital information.

Essential Features to Look for in Enterprise Search Software

When embarking on the quest to select the ideal enterprise search software, it's crucial to have a map that guides you through the myriad of features available. Below is a checklist of essential features that your enterprise search software should possess:

1. Centralized Repositories for Unity

Look for enterprise search software that centralizes repositories, creating a unified digital library for efficient and productive data access. This feature simplifies data retrieval, making it the core of your information ecosystem.

The first feature to seek in enterprise search software is the ability to centralize repositories. Think of this as creating a unified digital library where all your information is stored. This centralization is key to enhancing both efficiency and productivity, as it allows for quick access to all your data from a single point.

Enterprise search software that can effectively centralize data repositories becomes the core of your information ecosystem, making data retrieval a streamlined and simplified process.

2. Filtering Options for Ease of Use

Choose enterprise search software with advanced filters for precise, relevant, and comprehensive search results, boosting productivity.

Another indispensable feature is robust filtering options. The right enterprise search software should offer advanced filters to sift through the vast amounts of data. These filters act like a finely-meshed sieve, separating the relevant from the irrelevant, ensuring that the search results are not just comprehensive but also pertinent.

This precision in filtering aids in quickly pinpointing the exact information you need, enhancing overall productivity in your enterprise search efforts.

3. Security, Security, Security

Select enterprise search software with strong security features, ensuring data protection, compliance with regulations, and access only for authorized personnel.

Your chosen enterprise search software must provide ironclad security measures to protect sensitive information. It should comply with relevant regulations and ensure that data is secure and accessible only to authorized personnel.

The software should act as a guardian, safeguarding your data against unauthorized access and breaches, thus maintaining the integrity and confidentiality of your corporate information.

4. More Advanced Features to Consider

Look for software equipped with advanced features such as content classification, entity extraction, and others. These features are like having a high-tech arsenal at your disposal, enabling you to tackle complex search scenarios with ease.

They enhance the software’s ability to not only retrieve information but also to understand and organize it in a way that is most useful for your specific enterprise search needs.

5. AI-Powered, Ideally

AI enhances software by introducing a new level of intelligence and adaptability, allowing it to learn from user interactions and improve over time.

Enterprise search software powered by AI uses techniques such as machine learning, natural language processing, and neural search to enhance search accuracy and relevancy. It's akin to having a smart assistant that continually evolves and adapts, ensuring your enterprise search capabilities remain at the forefront.

Remember that the right enterprise search software is not just a tool, but a strategic asset that can significantly enhance the efficiency, productivity, and security of your organization's data management.

4 Enterprise Search Tools to Consider


Guru's enterprise search software features AI-driven integration with existing workflows, AI answers, and secure permissions, ideal for multi-tool stacks and Slack, with flexible pricing plans.

Guru stands out with its AI-driven approach that integrates seamlessly into existing workflows. Its unique selling point is the combination of enterprise search with knowledge management, offering instant AI answers and secure permissions. It's particularly beneficial for teams requiring quick, verified, and up-to-date information access.

Guru provides a few key features to companies that use a multi-tool stack, especially when they use Slack as their chat tool:

  1. Integration with Existing Sources: This allows companies to combine existing documents, data, and conversations into a singular, powerful search engine. It provides immediate answers within the current workspace by pulling information from various sources.

  2. Natural Language Processing: The AI-powered search is engineered to offer the most precise information using natural language processing. This means it can interpret queries similarly to a human, providing conclusive answers without the need for keyword-based or exact-match text searches.

  3. Workflow Optimization: The search feature is optimized for diverse work environments, including integration with Slack. Guru can automatically suggest answers from reliable knowledge sources within busy Slack channels to help employees increase productivity.

Guru offers several pricing plans for companies of various sizes and needs:

  1. Free Trial: The product provides a 30-day free trial of the platform, which includes Enterprise search, Intranet, and Wiki.

  2. Builder Plan: Pricing at $10 per user per month ($12 when billed monthly), the Builder Plan includes the AI-driven platform, encompassing Enterprise search, Intranet, and Wiki.

  3. Enterprise Plan: This is a custom, enterprise-grade solution that is tailored to scale with an organization. The pricing varies based on usage, needs, and more.


Glean's enterprise search software is AI-powered with deep learning for vector search, offering personalized, context-aware results across company apps. Key features include semantic understanding for natural queries, an assistant for answers and summaries, a knowledge graph for personalization, and over 100 connectors for broad integration.

Glean is known for its AI-powered workplace search, leveraging deep learning for vector search. This allows for personalized results and knowledge discovery and makes it an ideal solution for modern teams that require intuitive, context-aware search capabilities across all company apps.

Glean's enterprise search product offers several notable features:

  1. Deep Learning-Based Vector Search: This enables semantic understanding for natural language queries, with continuous training on the company's unique language and context for improved search relevance.

  2. Assistant and Chat Features: Glean provides an assistant that delivers answers, analyses, and summaries across various documents, with the ability to track the source of information and ensure secure, private, and permissions-aware generative AI chats and results.

  3. Personalization and Knowledge Graph: The platform personalizes results by building a knowledge graph that understands people, content, and interactions, even suggesting information before a search is initiated. It also identifies subject matter experts when knowledge artifacts don’t exist.

  4. Broad Integration and Easy Setup: Glean offers over 100 connectors to various apps, ensuring quick setup and scalability. It enforces existing data source permissions and offers hosting options that align with the company's data and security policies.


GoSearch's AI-powered enterprise search tool offers unified searches across cloud apps, AI-generated answers, and personalization. Features include AI insights for efficient information discovery, a central hub for resources, integration with connectors like Google Docs and Jira, centralized communication, and customizable security controls. It offers Essential, Pro, and Enterprise plans with varying features and pricing, tailored to different company sizes and needs.

GoSearch is an AI-powered tool that simplifies access to enterprise information by unifying searches across multiple cloud apps. It offers AI-generated answers, personalized suggestions, and is compatible with various connectors. GoSearch offers a range of features for AI-powered enterprise search and resource discovery:

  1. AI-Generated Answers and Information Discovery: GoSearch elevates team knowledge management by providing AI-generated answers and facilitating efficient information discovery.

  2. Unified Search Across Internal Information: It enables a unified search across all internal information sources within seconds, streamlining workflow and eliminating the need for manual searches across multiple apps.

  3. Hub for Various Resources: GoSearch is a central hub for documents, notes, tasks, files, and people across cloud apps, offering fast search results and AI answers to enhance focus on crucial tasks.

  4. Integration with Various Connectors: The platform leverages connectors like Google Docs, Notion, Jira, Confluence, and more to filter and display the most relevant information, resources, and people based on search queries.

  5. AI Insights and Centralized Communication: AI insights are utilized to pull data from all sources for intelligent enterprise search results. Additionally, GoSearch offers a central spot for company-wide announcements and centralized discussion.

  6. Control and Security: Users can control access, logs, and restrictions using their API key, ensuring full visibility into interactions with their large language model. The security measures are fully under the user's control, with data remaining within their chosen cloud.

GoSearch offers a variety of pricing plans. Companies can choose according to their size, needs, and security requirements:

  1. Essential Plan: Priced at $8 per user per month (starting at $80/mo for 10 users), this plan includes 5 data connectors, basic SSO with Google sign-in, AI-powered search results, questions and answers, and role-based access control.

  2. Pro Plan: At $10 per user per month (starting at $200/mo for 20 users), this plan includes everything in the Essential plan plus unlimited data connectors, generative AI chat, usage analytics, and expedited support.

  3. Enterprise Plan: This is a custom plan with custom pricing, which includes all the features of the Pro plan plus SSO/SAML/SCIM, enterprise-grade security, the option to bring your own cloud or LLM, and a designated customer success manager.


Lark is an optimal solution for businesses seeking to create, search, and manage workplace data. It combines chat, documents, sheets, calendars, meetings, project management, intranet, and database functionalities in one platform. Users can create, modify, and share these elements without switching apps. This allows teams to not only be able to find everything they need more quickly, but also accelerates collaboration by breaking down silos created by different apps.

Lark excels as an enterprise search software due to its all-in-one platform, facilitating easy retrieval and updating of work as teams collaborate and create in a unified space. Its robust APIs and integrations allow businesses to connect with other platforms, enabling seamless information search through notifications from various sources.

Lark's effectiveness as an enterprise search software stems from its all-in-one nature. As teams collaborate and create within a single platform, all their utilized and generated information is naturally stored in one place. Consequently, teams can easily retrieve and update their work.

Additionally, Lark's robust APIs and integrations enable businesses to connect Lark to the platforms they are using. This allows teams to find information from other platforms by searching for the notifications pushed to them.

One search. Everything.

Lark enables users to locate any information - such as chat histories, invites, meeting minutes, documents, sheets, databases, and more - by searching for specific keywords. Users can narrow down the search results by filtering based on information type, authors, date ranges, and more, making it easy to find the necessary information for work.

Lark's enterprise search software allows users to effortlessly locate information like chat histories, documents, and meeting minutes using keyword searches. With filters for type, author, and date range, it simplifies finding specific work-related information. For instance, searching "onboarding" in Lark brings up all related materials such as training sessions and guidebooks, easily accessible even on a phone.

For example, if you're a new employee seeking onboarding materials, you can simply search "onboarding" in Lark. All relevant materials, such as training sessions, slide decks, or comprehensive guidebooks, will appear in the search results, ready for you to easily browse and scroll through on your phone.

Centralize your knowledge

We'll discuss the differences between enterprise search software and knowledge management software. There's some overlap between the two because effective knowledge management often enhances enterprise search.

In Lark, teams can create interactive, rich-format documents and organize them with sheets, project management bases, databases, and more under one or more Wikis. This helps organizations retain knowledge and create a valuable repository for all employees.

Enterprise search software locates specific data, while knowledge management organizes and shares organizational knowledge. Lark combines these by letting teams create and organize documents into wikis and databases, enriching both knowledge retention and search efficiency.

Imagine you are a restaurant chain operating across multiple locations. You want to ensure that every dish tastes consistently good, which requires all restaurants to use the same, up-to-date recipes. Rather than creating multiple versions of Word documents, your restaurant chain could organize everything on a Lark Wiki for easy search and access.

Pay less to get more

Lark offers a cost-effective alternative for enterprise search software by consolidating multiple tools into one platform, reducing overall tech stack expenses while meeting work needs with a single monthly payment.

Purchasing new enterprise search software typically adds to your existing tech stack expenses. However, Lark provides an alternative to this incremental cost, allowing businesses to save money while still obtaining necessary solutions. With Lark, companies can consolidate their tool stack, paying a single bill each month without sacrificing their coverage on work needs.

Enterprise Search Software vs. Knowledge Management Software: Understanding the Difference

While both play a significant role in managing information, enterprise search software and knowledge management software cater to different needs and operational aspects within an organization.

Purpose and Functionality

  • Enterprise Search Software: This software is the go-to solution when you need to find specific information swiftly. It’s like a highly efficient search engine within your organization, adept at sifting through vast amounts of data to retrieve the exact document, file, or data entry you’re looking for. Think of it as your digital detective, uncovering the clues you need in a sea of information.

  • Knowledge Management Software: This software is about building and nurturing a comprehensive information ecosystem. From creating and sharing content to managing and utilizing organizational knowledge, this software acts as a collaborative hub, fostering a culture of knowledge sharing and collective learning.

Implementation and Usage

  • Enterprise Search Software: Typically implemented to streamline the search process across diverse data repositories. It’s the tool you turn to for quick, targeted searches, reducing the time and effort spent in locating information.

  • Knowledge Management Software: This involves a broader implementation, integrating various tools for collaboration, document management, and even workflow automation. It's used for a more comprehensive approach to managing and leveraging the collective knowledge of your organization.

Target Audience and Interaction

  • Enterprise Search Software: Ideal for anyone in the organization who needs quick access to specific information. The interaction is predominantly query-driven, emphasizing speed and precision.

  • Knowledge Management Software: Serves a wider audience, including teams and individuals engaged in creating, sharing, and using knowledge. Here, the interaction is more dynamic, focusing on engagement, collaboration, and knowledge development.

Technology and Features

  • Enterprise Search Software: Employs sophisticated search algorithms, indexing techniques, and often AI-driven enhancements to ensure fast and accurate search results.

  • Knowledge Management Software: Offers a diverse range of features, from content creation and collaborative tools to social networking elements, often encompassing enterprise search capabilities as part of a larger suite.

Organizational Impact

  • Enterprise Search Software: Directly enhances the efficiency of information retrieval, leading to improved productivity and faster decision-making.

  • Knowledge Management Software: Its impact is more expansive (and indirect in some cases), shaping the way knowledge is shared, utilized, and grown within the organization, in order to influence the organizational culture and learning environment.

While enterprise search software is your efficient guide through the information jungle, knowledge management software is the architect of your organization’s knowledge ecosystem. Depending on your specific needs, you might find one more suitable than the other, or perhaps a combination of both.

Enterprise Search Software FAQs

1. What exactly is enterprise search software?

  • Enterprise search software is a powerful tool designed to search for information within an organization's digital assets. It allows users to efficiently locate documents, files, emails, and other data across various internal systems and repositories.

2. How does enterprise search software differ from regular search engines like Google?

  • Unlike public search engines, enterprise search software is tailored for the specific needs of an organization. It focuses on searching through internal data and is equipped with features that respect privacy, security, and organizational structures.

3. Can enterprise search software handle different types of data formats?

  • Yes, most enterprise search software can index and search through a variety of data formats, including text documents, PDFs, emails, databases, and even multimedia files.

4. Is implementing enterprise search software a complex process?

  • The complexity varies depending on the size of your organization and the volume of data. However, modern enterprise search solutions are increasingly user-friendly, with many offering cloud-based options that are easier to deploy.

5. How does AI enhance enterprise search software?

  • AI improves the accuracy and efficiency of search results. It can understand the context of queries, learn from user behavior, and provide personalized search experiences, making the search process more intuitive and relevant.

6. What are the key benefits of using enterprise search software?

  • Key benefits include improved productivity, better decision-making due to faster access to information, enhanced collaboration, and a significant reduction in time spent searching for information.

7. How secure is enterprise search software?

  • Security is a top priority for enterprise search software. Most solutions offer robust security features, including user authentication, data encryption, and compliance with various data protection regulations.

8. Can enterprise search software integrate with other enterprise systems?

  • Yes, many enterprise search solutions offer integration capabilities with various enterprise systems such as CRM, ERP, and document management systems, allowing for a seamless search experience across platforms.

9. Is enterprise search software suitable for all sizes of businesses?

  • Enterprise search software, which is scalable, can benefit businesses of all sizes. It's particularly useful for medium and large businesses that generate and store substantial amounts of information. This software streamlines information retrieval, a vital process for both small and large enterprises.

10. What should I consider when choosing enterprise search software?

  • Consider factors like the size of your data, the variety of data sources, security needs, integration capabilities, ease of use, and the level of AI-enhanced features to ensure the software meets your specific organizational needs.

A New Perspective on Enterprise Search

Enterprise search software greatly improves an organization's ability to locate necessary information. This enhances collaboration, speed, and value creation. The core purpose of enterprise search is simple: it helps individuals find the information they need.

Imagine a world where information autonomously finds its way to people, eliminating the need for time-consuming searches. Companies often invest heavily in enterprise search software, only to discover that it is underutilized by their employees.

Lark enables businesses to streamline their daily tasks — such as chat, calendar, meetings, database, and documentation — into one platform. This makes all information easily searchable. In addition, Lark brings information directly to its users. Employees can click on industry jargon, technical terms, or even dish names to learn more about them through Lark Lingo.

Enterprise search software helps find important information quickly, making teamwork easier and faster. Lark goes a step further by combining different work tools into one easy-to-search place. It also automatically explains terms and jargon to users, making it even more useful.

For instance, if you're an engineer at a medical imaging company collaborating with people from medicine, manufacturing, and sales, this feature facilitates smoother collaboration by enabling information to reach people from different expertise.

Ready to explore how Lark can provide a fresh perspective on your enterprise search experience? Contact the Lark team today!






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