Business Information Review is a journal that is rooted in the idea of evidence-based professional practice, the sharing of professional experience, and the encouragement of professional development. It navigates a path between professional and academic journals drawing on both the real-world experiences of practitioners and the research experience of the wider academic community. The articles in this issue reflect that outlook.
First up is Temilade Adefioye Aina, Louise Cooke and Derek Stephens’ paper Methodology for Evaluating Competitive Intelligence Software Packages. Competitive intelligence is an important topic for the journal, describing the practice of defining, collecting, and analyzing information about products, competitors, customers, or any aspect of the commercial environment impacting on commercial practice. Recent years have seen the growth of software packages designed to make the process easier to manage. Aina et al.’s article seeks to develop a methodology for comparing and evaluating such software packages and to apply that evaluation to a selection of available software. The article was developed out of postgraduate research undertaken at Loughborough University and reflects out aim of bringing the best postgraduate student research in the business information management area to a wider audience.
Next is Ian Hunter’s paper Researching Leveraged Finance, the first of a two-part article addressing the complex area of leveraged finance and business information research approaches and sources. Leveraged finance has become an important market for professional advisory firms including accountancy, banking, and finance sector law firms, particularly in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. It is also a complex area of business research, and Ian’s article provides both a primer in and overview of the area, drawing on his experience as Research and Information Services Manager at Shearman & Sterling (London) LLP.
Staying with the finance theme that has featured in this issue, Joel Chigada from the University of Cape Town and Patrick Ngulube from the University of South Africa explore the retention strategies of the South African Banking sector. The research uncovered a lack of formal retention strategies in the sector and a lack of knowledge management guideline. Instead, the sector was informed by communities of practice, mentoring and apprenticeships, leveraging expertise, and using story telling techniques.
Our fifth article by new contributors to Business Information Review, Li Pin Tan and Kuan Yew Wong from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia has a similarly international focus. Entitled Importance versus practice of knowledge management constructs in manufacturing companies, the article addresses the status quo of knowledge management practice in manufacturing companies.
Finally, we have an interview with Darron Chapman, Director at CB Resourcing conducted by Claire Laybats. Darron has over 25 years’ industry experience gained from working within a specialist recruitment, training, and consultancy provider. In 2014, he established CB Resourcing with his business partner Simon Burton, with a broader remit encompassing areas such as strategy and market intelligence. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Recruitment Professionals/Recruitment & Employment Confederation and was the President of the European Chapter of SLA, the information industry body. The interview addresses career management and development for senior executives in the knowledge and information management sector.Darron also gives his views and experiences on the recruitment marketplace for senior executives in this sector.
Regular readers will know that a key part of each issue of Business Information Review are the regular Initiatives and Perspectives columns, which both round up some of the developments in the business information world. In Perspectives, Martin White explores recent publications both in the information world and beyond that have relevance for professional practice. In Initiatives, Alan Foster reviews developments, new tools, and new publications in the commercial information management sector. Both provide an incredibly comprehensive and useful resource that over the years have traced changes and developments that have influenced professional lives.