How important is Knowledge in an organization? How can you measure and improve the engagement, and use its tools and contents?
There are a number of valid theories out there and lots of options to experiment with and adopt.
Knowledge Bases can meet a variety of needs, but for the purpose of this article, we will focus on the operational side where it’s used to support colleagues to follow a process, to service a customer, or perform a query/task.
Most organizations have a Knowledge management system built into their Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system/tool of choice. In other cases, an organization may adopt a solution where all the company and departmental processes are documented in an internal system.
Most often the challenge after all the time and cost invested in setting up your Knowledge management is getting people to use it and keeping the content up to date and accurate.
The main driver for these failures is the fact that a Knowledge Strategy cannot be successful without a robust Knowledge Framework.
THE KNOWLEDGE FRAMEWORK
A Knowledge Framework consists of 3 essential elements:
1- The People: Roles and responsibilities of employees within the organizations.
2- The Process: The processes to create, update and review the Knowledge Content.
3-The Tool/s: The systems, the platforms, the databases, the solutions that hold the information.
Each of these elements can be addressed and implemented in a number of ways. Factors like the company culture, performance policies and quality assurance all have an influence on each of the 3.
Also, note that the elements are listed in order of importance. You need the right people involved and everyone in the organization to know their place and role or your Knowledge Framework will fail apart quickly. (see setting up a Knowledge Framework)
Once the 3 elements mentioned above are successfully in place then we can focus on looking at strategies to promote the use of the Knowledge content/agent scripting.
Below are some suggestions on how you can promote engagement and usage in your organization:
1. Use Knowledge reporting and insight to paint the big picture to key stakeholders:
- Provide the business with insightful views on Knowledge usage and engagement.
- Compare this information with performance metrics at the individual, team and departmental levels.
- Compare the Quality and Performance failures with direct Knowledge usage at the interaction level.
- Quantify the percentage of fails where Knowledge was not used - Managers can use this data to follow up with their teams on Knowledge use.
2. Reward and recognize
- Reward/recognize individuals with high engagement and/or have flagged a high volume of knowledge changes/improvements. (Vouchers, extra pay, etc.)
- While setting up the knowledge framework, it's a good practice to identify highly motivated and knowledgeable colleagues to be Knowledge SME's/Champions so they can promote engagement at a team level.
Produce regular and insightful communications specific to your Knowledge Management System (Newsletter, email, etc.)
Tailor the communications to the audience. The key is to be specific and relevant.
Recognize the super users in your company and give updates on what's changed/coming next.
- Track the Knowledge efficiencies and regularly share MI, reporting on engagement/usage and time/cost savings. Knowledge updates and MI should be a regular topic of discussion at Team and Departmental meetings.
4- Create and Promote a culture where Knowledge is a key enabler
- Make Knowledge MI and insight part of the Team and Departmental reporting.
- Make it a mandatory change deliverable as part of any project at all company levels.
- Make it part of the objectives for the key members of the Knowledge Framework.
- Measure and track benefits, risks and/or impacts around Knowledge at a department level.
- Ensure Knowledge updates and success stories are shared where possible through multiple channels at all levels in a relevant and engaging manner.