Overcoming Language Barrier to Knowledge Sharing

Cross-language question answering is able to retrieve relevant information from documents written in a different language from the user queries.

Overcoming Language Barrier to Knowledge Sharing

Organizations struggle to disseminate information as they expand into international markets. According to Forbes Insights, over half (65 percent) of the companies surveyed face language barriers that contribute to inefficiency and low productivity. Information search process (ISP) is no longer exclusively limited to just the native language of the user. How do you find information when you don’t speak the language?

The situation gives rise to cross-language question answering (CLQA). AI capabilities such as Allganize’s Cognitive Search use natural language understanding (NLU) to retrieve relevant information from documents written in a different language from the user queries. The platform enables users to overcome the language barrier, making the creation and retrieval of the actual knowledge easier. The diagram below illustrates Allganize’s CLQA:

Knowledge sharing is a key differentiator in driving organizational performance. Teams should be able to access the information necessary to answer key company questions regardless of timezone or language. Allganize’s Cognitive Search is able to understand the context and nuance of users’ queries in any language which means users can search in ways that feel natural to them and we will return a relevant result.

Figure 1: In managing a diverse workforce, would you say your company faces language barriers between executives/management and other workers?

For instance, a team member in the Japan office wanted to know if the company portal’s available on the mobile phone. The answer was found in the English knowledge base and returned in the results. Even though the employee’s query was not a direct match to the question in the knowledge base, Cognitive Search understood the context and was able to retrieve the answer they needed. Furthermore, Allganize’s CLQA works with almost all the languages we tested, including Korean, Indonesian, Chinese, French, German, and many more.

In the age of remote-work, we need to consider additional elements that were previously not necessary when everyone works in close proximity. To successfully grow beyond your own shores, companies need to create an environment where employees are free to ask questions in their native language and have direct access to the knowledge as if they were asking an expert in the company in their native language in person. This can best be achieved via a knowledge base platform that supports CLQA cognitive search. The last thing you want is for your team to end up divided along language lines.

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