Knowledge Management: How Do I Know I’m Doing It Right?
Knowledge management has come of age. Organizations in every area of the marketplace are building and leveraging knowledge tools to help empower their customers, their employees and their business. The business value in reducing training costs, driving self help, infusing service interactions with knowledge, and defining measurable business outcomes is abundantly clear.
These are benefits all savvy ‘knowledge-centered’ organizations aspire to. But how do you know if you’re doing it right? What signposts, activities or changes should you expect to see that indicate knowledge is truly empowering your business?
Let’s examine each of these components of value and consider where we can identify clear and powerful positive behaviors:
Reducing training and ramp-up time through knowledge access:
- Knowledge base usage by new service reps starts and stays constant—it is clearly their go-to resource for the majority of customer inquiries.
- Supervisors, team leads and floor managers report increased self-sufficiency—fewer basic or repeat questions, and quicker turnaround times on more complex issues as they learn to use content effectively.
- Service reps actively and consistently provide feedback on the knowledge base—they are attentive to changes, improvements or corrections.
Increased customer self-help:
- Customers use the knowledge base instead of calling—an obvious indicator but the critical one. If they use self-help and then still choose to call, then either the content or the support channel isn’t doing the job fully for them.
- As the number of successful self-help interactions increases, customers call less frequently about common, simple topics, and the contact center sees an increase in more complex or unique questions overall.
- Contact center process analysis shows less floundering about on service processes—higher consistency of answers.
- Support agents show a higher usage of processes, less avoidance of or bypassing of complex scenarios when knowledge can drive a fast, intuitive answer.
- Customer feedback shows improvements in verbatims about the confidence, clarity and apparent ease of obtaining an answer from support reps.
Measurable business outcomes:
- Metrics from content usage begin to inform and impact how support interacts with other business groups to help ensure they keep their content accurate and up-to-date.
- Service leadership starts to track and use KM metrics as core indicators to better manage its business.
Considered together, these indicators of a knowledge-centered environment are signposts of evolution. They form mutually supporting activities that help reinforce and expand the usage and value of knowledge. As service reps commit to the knowledge base, they teach others common usage, further reducing time to expertise.
As self-help evolves, the value of customer-focused knowledge becomes clear and explicit. As knowledge merges into the context of all service interactions, the paths to answers become tighter and more consistent. And, perhaps most importantly, clear knowledge usage measures create a solid foundation of information from which to base effective action and improvement.
Ultimately these tips point to more than benefits—they show a way of life where knowledge and service impact and optimize each other.
Could your organization use these knowledge management benefits? Digital disruption is forcing organizations to be more focused and responsive to the needs of both customers and employees than ever before. Moving quickly to address new customer service imperatives, Seriously Smart Organizations—the ones starting to take digital disruption seriously—are leveraging knowledge management to help unite information and experience. Learn more.
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