CODiE award winners (and why they matter to information professionals)
Less than two weeks ago, the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) announced the content winners of the 2011 CODiE awards (more winners to be announced throughout the year). For those who don’t know about the CODiE Awards – well, here’s the description from their website:
The CODiE™ Awards recognize excellence in the business software, digital content, and education technology industries. Through a thorough review of products and services by people who know the industry, the CODiE™ Awards allow companies to validate their products against the competition. The products that qualify as finalists benefit from a comprehensive publicity program that involves traditional media outreach, social media activity, and opportunities for expressing thought leadership in the technology community through SIIA.
Clearly these are awards designed to showcase excellence. Yet it’s easy for us as information professionals to not know about them, overlook them, or not spend time on them because many of these products are “software.”
But here are three reasons why it does matter to information professionals:
- Content is a main component of what is judged. And content is what we as information professionals use on a daily basis. Knowing content is key to connecting people to information – so why shouldn’t we be keeping abreast? (as a side note, the CODiE awards have, for a long time, included information resources that we use)
- The content that is reviewed is directly applicable and some of what we (or our clients) use daily. Look among the 70 product categories, and you see categories that are a no-brainer:
- Best Business Information Resource,
- Best Content Aggregation Solution,
- Best Science, Technical, and Medical Information Resource,
- Best Directory & Business Leads Solution,
- Best Financial Information Resource,
- Best Medical and Health Information Resource,
- and the list goes on. And look at the vendors which submit entries include the names of the vendors we use on a frequent basis, including: InfoDesk, Dow Jones, Euromonitor, Proquest, and Standard & Poor’s. Sound familiar?
- It gives us awareness as far as where the most novel uses and paradigms of information are going. We work in an industry where not only getting the best information is important, but getting the information in our users’ heads is just as important. And when we are keeping up with the best visualization, best tools – that helps us understand how to communicate better with our clients. (and as a threat, if applications are doing a much better job than we are, they’re also likely getting more attention and use than us.)
I had the opportunity this year to be a judge, and I can categorically say that while it took a lot of time, it was well worth it in rewards back to me. I learned much more about the state of information, novel applications, and best practices for dissemination than I could have through a webinar. I had the opportunity to not only see the nominees, but ask questions and understand how people are using information in different arenas.
Ultimately, we should definitely be paying attention to the CODiE awards – at the very least, checking out some of the award winners every year (special kudos to InfoDesk, one of the vendors that support SLA and PHTD), and for those with more time – be a judge! It’s well worth the time.