Enterprise hits and misses - voice search is here, but so are digital duopolies

Profile picture for user jreed By Jon Reed May 5, 2019
This week - voice search isn't waiting for the enterprise. Also: why CEOs can't delegate AI responsibility. Fresh looks at digital transformation contrast with digital duopolies. Your whiffs include: mocking open offices, and a new low for dynamic personalization.


Lead story - Voice search is here - can you hear it? by Barb Mosher Zinck

MyPOV: My company doesn't have to think about voice search yet. If you're thinking that way, Barb has a wake-up call:

Voice search isn’t the next big trend, it’s here already, and if you aren’t making changes to your web experience to support it, you are missing out on a big opportunity.

When you're late to the search game, it's a beast to catch up. Barb shares stats, first from Backlinko.com (okay, goofy web site name, but):

  • 41% of adults use voice search daily
  • 20% of all Google mobile queries are done by voice


  • In Microsoft’s 2019 Voice Report, it was found that 72% of survey respondents reported they use a digital assistant (Siri, Alexa, Cortana, Google Assistant)

What are we using voice search for? As per Microsoft:

  • 68% are searching for a quick fact
  • 44% are researching a product/service
  • 52% are searching for a product/service
  • 30% are comparing a product or service

Past approaches to SEO will fall short with voice search. So how do you break through to those top voice positions? No simple answers to this moving target. One first step? Push to get your content used for Google’s Featured Snippet (40.7% of voice search answers currently come from the Featured Snippet). It's all about how our content will relate to chatbots and conversational AI, and building those content/data bridges now. Beats begging for backlinks with Tony Robbins, eh?

Happy children eating apple

Diginomica picks - my top stories on diginomica this week

Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my top choices from our vendor coverage:

A few more vendor picks, without the quotables:

Dell-VMware beat the hybrid cloud drum - Kurt
Why prescriptive analytics matters - the view from Profitect customers - Jon
Huawei Analyst Summit – living at the bleeding edge where everything is more ‘R’ than ‘D’ - Martin

Best of the rest

Waiter suggesting a bottle of wine to a customer

Lead story - Leading your organization to responsible AI by McKinsey

We're all weary of the AI casino of hopes and dreams marketing blitz, but this piece from McKinsey shows at least we've advanced this conversation:

While artificial intelligence (AI) is quickly becoming a new tool in the CEO tool belt to drive revenues and profitability, it has also become clear that deploying AI requires careful management to prevent unintentional but significant damage, not only to brand reputation but, more importantly, to workers, individuals, and society as a whole.

Yes - but what to do about it?

The best solution is almost certainly not to avoid the use of AI altogether.

Right, but also incredibly obvious. McKinsey details how organizations should take AI responsibility. That works. But McKinsey makes a follow-on point we should note: too often, these ethical AI responsibilities are delegated to the data science team. That's a no-no.

How many CEOs can speak articulately about the impact of AI not just on their products but on their workforce, customers - their industry? To help, McKinsey has compiled questions that CEOs can pose to their development organizations each step of the way. Bonus points for acknowledging tough tradeoffs, rather than claiming a how-to guide will sew this up.

Other standouts

  • A Week Later, Docker Offers Scant Details on Hub Attack - To be fair,  Docker did have their reasons for holding back some info. But, as The New Stack reports, that's also problematic. The scope of this vulnerability is not yet clear.
  • CIO’s Guide To Stopping Privileged Access Abuse – Part 2 - Right on point, Louis "denial of service" Columbus is back with another vital security installment for CIOs. Columbus poses a monster dilemma: "CIOs are grappling with the paradox of protecting the rapidly expanding variety of attack surfaces from breaches while still providing immediate access to applications, systems, and services that support their business’ growth."
  • Digital Transformation: The Art of the Possible? - Transformation twist from Third Stage Consulting: "Companies tend to fall into two extremes in their digital transformations: there are those who expect far too much from their transformations, and then there are those that expect far too little." I (mostly) agree - especially if the inflated expectations are centered around infinite quantum blockchain futures.

Honorable mention

Big Idea: Extreme Capitalism And The Dawn Of Digital Duopolies - Ray Wang's book preview is a warning for those who think innovation is inevitable, or equally distributed. "Organization’s shareholders bet against them by stripping away their ability to invest and innovate for the long run with stock buy backs, share dividends, and a plethora of mergers and acquisitions."

Reality check on promotions - Promotions seem like a feel-good opportunity, but there are thorns with the roses. Vijay Vijayasankar reflects: "Even when a company says it is all data driven – it is often the case that subjective decisions (my favorite one – a score for communication skills) contribute to the final “score”".

Overworked businessman


Reader Frank Scavo is calling BS on open offices:

Meanwhile, The New Stack actually found some AIOps users in the wild. If only we could lose the AIOps buzzword somewhere out there. I was the happy victim of cutting edge throw crap against the wall dynamic personalization:

Career opportunities - kind of like snakes and ladders, says Clive. Whoops:

See you next time...

If you find an #ensw piece that qualifies for hits and misses - in a good or bad way - let me know in the comments as Clive (almost) always does. Most Enterprise hits and misses articles are selected from my curated @jonerpnewsfeed. 'myPOV' is borrowed with reluctant permission from the ubiquitous Ray Wang. 

Image credit - Happy Children © Anna Omelchenko, Waiter Suggesting Bottle © Minerva Studiom, Overworked Businessman © Bloomua, Winter Sports © lassedesignen, Loser and Winner © ispstock - all from Fotolia.com.

Disclosure - SAP, Oracle, Zoho, Workday, Sage Intacct and Salesforce are diginomica premier partners as of this writing.