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Irish Tax Institute accelerates tax database search with MarkLogic

The Irish Tax Institute has opted for MarkLogic for its TaxFind database service, with a system that pools a range of data types

The Irish Tax Institute has chosen a NoSQL database technology to accelerate searches on its TaxFind database service.

Martin Lambe, chief executive of the institute, said the MarkLogic database that replaced its previous, bespoke database, is “amazingly fast", with sub-second response time.

“Our users need that. Tax professionals are on the go and working all hours, in all places around the world, using mobile devices," he said.

The Irish Tax Institute is the main provider of tax information in Ireland. Its TaxFind service offers subscribers access to Irish tax legislation, and guidance that includes tax technical papers from seminars and conferences, as well as over 25 tax commentary publications. It serves the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) community in Ireland and other tax professionals, such as those in the global accounting firms.

“We have a sizeable archive of valuable tax information contained in many different formats. The challenge was finding a solution that could store and access the large repository of data whilst at the same time providing a simple search interface that pinpointed very quickly the most relevant material for members,” said Lambe.

The institute developed a tax taxonomy in-house to enhance the search capability they hope the new database will bring.

The institute, said Lambe, chose the MarkLogic database for its fast development time. It went from concept to production in seven months. “We considered other, relational databases,” said Lambe, “but none were as effective as the NoSQL databases.”

Multimedia ambitions

The organisation’s goal was to integrate 300,000 pages of tax content, including archive material in Word, PDF, XML and HTML.

Lambe said they plan to add multimedia content from their conferences and lectures in future.

“We were relying on third parties to do that before, but we can now do that ourselves,” he said.

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The institute chose MarkLogic in January 2015, on the advice of 67 Bricks – a search software focused consultancy that specialises in the database publishing industry. It appointed 67 Bricks to implement the technology. The TaxFind service went live with the new XML database on 19th October 2015. The institute will be getting feedback from user groups this month, January 2016.

“67 Bricks selected MarkLogic for the Institute because its next-generation database software has the hardened-enterprise capabilities required by the customer. The Institute has a mandate to use technology in innovative ways and the MarkLogic database combined with 67 Bricks content enrichment expertise fitted the bill,” said Sam Herbert, client services director at the consultancy.

Adrian Carr, group vice-president, global sales said: “This is a great example of how to integrate many silos of data to deliver a single view across the organisation and launch a new service.”

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