I’ve seen the future and (part of) it’s Qbengo

In the past I’ve written quite a bit about expertise location and knowledge mapping. Expertise location is about supporting people to find people with certain expertise they’re looking for. In larger and multi-nationals organizations this is a big issue. One aspect about expertise location is also finding out where the person is. This can be a static location (e.g. the person works in room 3, building 4). This is difficult enough, but it can be done as I wrote some time ago.

However, the workforce is more mobile than ever. Less and less employees have a fixed space they’re working in daily. They work in several rooms in an office during the week, they work from home, in the car, etc. Supporting expertise location in this context is even harder. In theory it can be done. I wrote about this as well. But I never saw a company actually connect the dots and make it work. Until recently.

I had the pleasure to visit Qbengo. Qbengo is currently focused on connecting people at larger conferences. You’ve been there: a large conference with many booths. You have specific questions and would like to have them answered, but finding your way to the right person and/or booth, is hard. Furthermore, you don’t want to walk by all the booths, because that takes too much of your time.

Qbengo has developed technology to support this process. They can quickly map out a conference location: the conference rooms, lunch area, booths, etc. By downloading there app you get access to these conference maps. But you can also register and connect with people and vendors there. When you set up a meeting with Qbengo you are subsequently helped to find that person or booth with turn-by-turn navigation inside the conference location. The cool thing is this also works in 3D. And this was exactly one of the issues I pointed to some time ago. For (expertise) maps inside organizations to work, you would need 3D-mapping technology, because most offices are multi-layered.

Qbengo is a start-up and a start-up needs focus. But you can easily see where I think they should and could go, right? Yep, expertise location for organizations. They have all the elements to make this work. This is (part of) our future and I think this is very exciting.

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