A knowledge sharing software is a self-serve online library, containing information about a product, service, a topic or a department of a company.
It extends the functionality of a knowledge base with a lot of features. Among them multiple file-formats or deep search within the content, a Q&A engine, and social interactions to keep knowledge current, trustworthy, and quickly findable.
It is built using data from various sources, but usually, it comes from several contributors who are familiar with the subject. If you’re wondering how to motivate team members to create knowledge, we’ve written an article about scalable learning, the new knowledge management strategy.
And still, why would a company need knowledge sharing software?
Companies need a way to store knowledge so that people can browse through the available information and find what they need with ease. There are many ways a knowledge sharing platform can positively impact your organization: it boosts employee engagement, it reduces onboarding and training costs, it helps generate new ideas and more.
How do you choose the knowledge sharing solution that is right for you?
There is a wide array of knowledge management solutions available on the market. This makes picking the one that’s suitable for your business a real challenge. Let’s go through a brief overview of the main issues you need to take into consideration when deciding what fits your needs.
7 steps to choosing the knowldge sharing software that’s right for you
1. It needs to be accurate
One feature you need to check for is the ability of the software to find what you’re searching, through commonly used phrases, from the information in your database. Finding the correct answers to your queries, and quickly is probably the most important feature of a knowledge management platform.
2. Speed is a must
Accuracy is an essential feature, and so is speed. Proper knowledge sharing software can provide the right answers instantly. After all, one of the problems it solves is reducing the time wasted looking for solutions. Just imagine how frustrating would be, for both employees and clients, to wait a few minutes until an answer is found.
3. Facilitates adding new content
A knowledge management platform should be constantly updated with fresh, new information. Therefore, making it easy for your staff to do this should be among the features of the solution you choose. A friendly interface, easy to navigate and intuitive features will allow you to keep your database up to date.
4. Complex analytics solutions
Another one of the features great knowledge sharing solutions come with is the ability to generate scorecards to indicate the most searched for queries.
Why is such information useful, you’re wondering? It’s actually very simple: you can use it to train your agents to answer questions related to them faster. Analytics solutions also provide great insight into how the platform itself is used.
5. Compatibility with other tools
We’re talking about integrations, of course, with other solutions your team relies on. Whether it’s task management systems, chatbots, CRMs, and many others, a knowledge sharing platform should be compatible with the tools you are using.
Many platforms are built for specific groups, like founders, tech teams or HR departments, but there are also more general options. It’s up to you to figure out in the first place who is going to use the one you’re looking for.
6. Employees can leave feedback
A built-in way of providing feedback on the accuracy of the content should be mandatory for a top-notch knowledge management platform. After all, employees are the ones who should do this, since they are the ones making use of it daily. Additionally, features like requesting new search terms and improved descriptions or suggesting edits eventually bring more value to the entire team.
7. Shows daily status updates
Last but not least, a feature that can make your team’s work significantly easier: being notified about the latest updates and key messages. This way, they are aware of the latest development and what they should focus on.
The points above should help you get a clear idea of how a knowledge management solution that is suitable for your business should look like. In order to make sure that everybody benefits from it, there are a few steps you need to follow:
- Make an official announcement regarding the new software, in advance, through all your internal channels. Make sure you explain in detail what’s going to happen next.
- Make sure important information is available exclusively within the platform. This is a great way of giving employees a nudge to become familiar with the new software.
- Offer training and seminars on the new platform before the official rollout to those who are interested. There’s a high chance of turning employees into evangelists and this will, in turn, make the implementation easier.
What has your experience been so far with choosing the right knowledge software? Which were the aspects you were interested in before making your final decision? We’d love to hear more, so drop us a line in the comments section below.