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Enterprise 360 at the PoolParty Summit 2021: Semantic Web Conference Highlights Importance of Holistic Views

November 11, 2021
Semantics Amsterdam 2021

The PoolParty Summit 2021 was an online semantic web conference designed to encourage participants and speakers interested in the semantic web to talk more deeply about their experiences with each other and the PoolParty team. A first for the Semantic Web Company in terms of hosting and showcasing a totally virtual conference like this one, the PoolParty Summit 2021 is a  milestone in our company’s history.

Angela DaSilva

Angela DaSilva

Content Writer

Last week, we published the blog “Celebrating the PoolParty Summit 2021 From the Morning After.” As the name implies, that blog was largely celebratory in reference to us being fresh off the heels of the Summit, not even 24 hours after the final presentation was broadcasted. 

Today, we still celebrate the Summit, but in greater detail. As part of the PoolParty Summit 2021 blog series, here is a full recap of the main presentations of the semantic web conference.

Day 1 & Day 2: Use Cases

November 3, 2021 marked the first day of the PoolParty Summit. The semantic web conference kicked off with a welcome message from our  Marketing Director, Thomas Thurner.

“Good evening and good morning to the PoolParty Summit,” said Thomas. “The Semantic Web Company is happy to have you here.”

And so began our first ever PoolParty Summit, and CEO Andreas Blumauer’s opening presentation.

Enterprise 360 leads the semantic web conference.

Andreas’ presentation set the stage for the overall theme of the PoolParty Summit, which was Enterprise 360. This term refers to our methodology for attaining 360-degree views of an organization’s data in 4 crucial aspects: 

      • Customer 360
      • Product 360
      • Employee 360
      • Market 360.

Want to learn more about Enterprise 360? Read our ultimate guide here.

This image shows how the 4 pillars of a company connect to make Enterprise 360.

This business strategy is built off the principle that the more insights a person is given about their organization by making meaningful connections between all their data points, the more they can make better decisions and operate successfully. While other companies have begun adopting “360” initiatives into exclusive applications that their users must buy, our solution relies on knowledge graphs that can be integrated into any organization’s current system and enhanced. 

Visually represented as a web of sorts, the  knowledge  graph  lies  on  top  of  existing  company  databases  to  link various  business  assets, entities, concepts, etc. together to  see  how  these  things  are  related. Our customers and partners, who utilize these semantic solutions, had their own success stories to say about the different aspects of Enterprise 360. 

While this is not an exhaustive overview of each of the talks at our semantic web conference, the following paragraphs briefly summarize each speaker and the underlying themes.

 

Product 360.

360-degree views of a product form the basis for continuously improving the service and maintenance processes around a product, creating end-to-end solutions for customers which can be optimized based on feedback. 

Dana Bublitz, Senior Information Architect at Microsoft, was the first to speak about this concept where PoolParty’s taxonomies and knowledge graphs were needed to modernize Microsoft Doc’s infrastructure. As stated in her presentation, her team’s previous Excel-based taxonomies were in “such bad shape, [they] didn’t even work as taxonomies.” With PoolParty, her team was able to create a dynamic environment that improved site navigation, search capabilities, and a centralized repository for Microsoft Doc users. 

At RWS Joe Pairman, Senior Product Manager, and Arpita Maity, Product Management Data Science & Knowledge Graphs, Product 360 is being used in a solution for content management systems. RWS’ own Tridion is a CMS that uses smart tagging to enable better findability of files and documents in the CMS. With this integration, users get a better overview of all their product content.

At ADEO, a leading international brand in home arrangement and DIY, Product Owner of Knowledge Graphs Charles Gouwy, has used a 360 strategy to facilitate an online buyer’s journey. Since a lot of products are necessary in a DIY project, the idea was to continue to guide a customer through a purchase journey by recommending products related to the project. Gouwy’s team needed to categorize their products via a taxonomy and link them together in a knowledge graph in order to provide these recommendations. Their newly found overview of their products and buyer journey has helped them excel at customer service.

Customer 360.

In Customer 360, a holistic knowledge graph means being able to see customers from all sides, including every interaction they  have  with  a  company,  from  the  first  contact  form  they  have  submitted to their most recent support ticket

Karsten Schremp, Managing Director at Pantopix, provided testimony on how his company has used knowledge graphs to provide exceptional customer service. In the machinery and engineering industry, technical product information is necessary to ensure a job gets done. When a plant experiences operational or equipment issues, they often resort to calling up the manufacturers of the equipment to troubleshoot and fix the issues. Knowledge graphs and the metadata within them quickly provide service technicians with information in a service portal, thus improving and shortening the service process.

At Healthdirect Australia, Information Manager James Humffray uses taxonomies and knowledge graphs to maintain a national online symptom checker. In his presentation, Humffray explained how building a thesaurus with PoolParty has enabled an intelligent search for Australian citizens who go on their site to see how they should respond to the symptoms they are experiencing with tailored health recommendations. With an interconnected overview of all the symptoms, diseases, and responses located in the backend as a knowledge graph, citizens can get information in a timely manner.

Employee 360.

For Employee 360, 360-degree views on the employee life cycle and workspace ensure that all employee needs are met because all aspects of their hiring process and working environment are mapped and visible.

Simon Rogers’ use case at Yokogawa is a strong example of Employee 360 because it shows how semantic technology has increased workplace efficiency and safety. Before PoolParty, shift handovers between laborers at production plants either provided inaccurate or missing information, or were delivered in an untimely manner, which impacted the safety conditions of the plant. As the Digital Information Consultant at Yokogawa, Rogers helped build an Operations Management Knowledge Graph which mapped flags/errors in technical equipment and gave employees a 360-degree view of their workspace so they could be better informed about the conditions and fix them faster.

At Enterprise Knowledge, CEO Zach Wahl and COO Joseph Hilger, champion the “full picture” that an organization can get of their employee with Employee 360. Once a full profile of an employee has been built based on their skills, background, projects they’ve worked on, etc. an organization can understand their employee holistically. This employee can be chosen as a subject matter expert for future projects, they can be developed in skill, and the list goes on. As Hilger so well put it, when you get a 360-degree overview of your employees, you can “look for the best people to break down natural departmental silos.

Senior Information Architect at JobTeaser François Violette spoke about the JobTeaser business model, which combines schools and universities across Europe with companies who are looking for applicants to fill their job roles. JobTeaser acts as a portal that mentors applicants to make the best profiles, find jobs that fit their criteria, and guide them through the entire career process. The portal uses psychometric tools to help build skill profiles and connect applicants, which is built from skill taxonomies and ontologies. Furthermore, the tools help recommend jobs to candidates based on tests and scores they receive using a semantic model that suggests jobs according to relevancy scores. Altogether, JobTeaser’s suite of tools connects all facets of the job recruitment and selection process into one dynamic view.

At RGP, Director of Digital Innovation & Customer Experience Alex Ragland and Knowledge Management Content/Taxonomy Manager Jonathan Nguyen, Employee 360 was necessary to facilitate their consultancy company’s digital transformation. Since 2019 when they implemented their first taxonomy, the goal was to make “borderless talent” where their connected systems could identify which of their consultants could best help clients with the most pertinent information and skills, regardless of where they sit in the company. Ragland compared their experience to buying a box of cake mix, where some shoppers look at the photo of the cake, others look at the nutritional facts, and others the ingredients. While these are multiple views of the same thing, all views are valuable and should be connected towards the same goal.

Market 360.

In Market 360, the 360-degree knowledge graph can help market professionals map all the relevant pieces of the market together in order to deliver engaging marketing messages and content at the right time and place.

John Kottcamp, Chief Marketing Technologist at Tahzoo, presented a couple of aspects of Enterprise 360. His talk focused on the content life cycle, where content related to a product or service must be managed from conception to delivery. Using knowledge graphs and semantic technology, an organization can bridge gaps between customer and company language, product information and staff members who need to communicate the information to the customers, and so on. Altogether, when the market and product are mapped within 360-degree views of a knowledge graph, organizations can produce important product-related content and deliver it to the market faster. Similar to the “telephone game” when a story gets passed from one person to another, ideas and sentences can get morphed so much that it’s not the same story at all – mapping all these important “plot points” in a knowledge graph means that the telephone problem can be avoided.

Day 2: Technical Solutions

Use cases and success stories were the primary focus of the Summit. However, as it was a semantic web conference, the PoolParty Summit also addressed some of the more technical aspects of semantic technology. 

Day 2 of the PoolParty Summit covered this, with 3 of the talks referring to semantic solutions. 

      • Question-Answering Systems: Led by SWC’S Data & Knowledge Enginerr Ioanna Lytra and Dennis Diefenbach, CEO at The QA Company, this presentation showed viewers how question answering-systems can be used to respond to the natural language queries of its customers. With a combined partnership using PoolParty’s knowledge graphs and QAnswer’s advanced natural language processing, users can ask a question-answering system, “Who can program in java and C++?” and the system will respond with relevant results.
      • Knowledge Graphs: SWC’s CCO Sebastian Gabler and CTO at Ontotext Vassil Momtchev talked about knowledge graphs and their ability to bridge data silos – regardless if the data is structured or unstructured. Their presentation highlighted a partnership between GraphDB and PoolParty that provides a fully integrated solution that combines a market-leading end-to-end technology stack with professional services.
      • Recommender Systems: SWC’s CSO Florian Bauer and Oxford Semantic Technologies CEO Peter Crocker reflected on the value of a strong recommender system. Using PoolParty and RDFox’s graph-based technology and semantic reasoning, users can receive intelligent recommendations that are evaluated as helpful.

PoolParty today and beyond.

The final presentation of the PoolParty Summit fittingly ended with a roadmap and outlook for the PoolParty Semantic Suite. Presented by CEO Andreas Blumauer, the audience could get insights about Semantic Web Company, its valuable partnerships, the product’s philosophy, and which direction the product is going in for 2023 and even 2030. 

The presentation addressed Gartner’s Hype Cycles for 2021 and where PoolParty fits on the curve, as well as how PoolParty is proudly helping organizations like Sensing Clues, who is responsible for protecting wildlife and nature conservation with user-friendly technology supplied to rangers in the areas. 

In terms of product development, Andreas spoke to how the PoolParty Semantic Suite will focus on the following solutions:

  • Making user intent more machine readable such as with question-answering systems
  • Improving semantic search in technical product documentation
  • Implementing semantic tagging with Tridion
  • Building a PoolParty Recommender that is easy to train and use
  • & more

For 2030, Andreas forecasted the growing importance of knowledge graphs. As the semantic web gets bigger and demands for better supply chains, cyclical economies, etc. become greater, there will be a paradigm shift in terms of how we manage our knowledge and data. 

Especially after Covid-19 where the world was split off into many directions, global collaboration and holistic knowledge management are the recipes towards success – whereby knowledge graphs serve as the main ingredient.

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