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How Knowledge Bases Can Help Companies Boost Performance And Productivity

How Knowledge Bases Can Help Companies Boost Performance And Productivity

The level of performance in a company is not only dependent on processes and individual talent. Companies need to create richer learning environments in which knowledge access is provided to all employees and where a culture of collaboration precedes every decision made.

As this is intimately connected to technology, we need to take a close look at the various forms in which technology dresses in order to help CEOs keep up with the new wave of challenges arising from complex environments.  One such technology comes in the form of knowledge bases.

Knowledge bases can be found in various shapes and sizes but serve a common purpose: they help companies manage their knowledge assets more efficiently and in turn boost productivity and performance. Although most companies confirm that their knowledge will differentiate them from the rest, they are still struggling to keep up when talent walks out the door, when best practices remain in the minds of team members and when reinventing the wheel becomes a regular headache. From research it appears that this accounts for great financial deficits as teams spend valuable time repeating the same mistakes and applying outdated solutions.

Why invest in knowledge bases?

  • The time required to implement solutions is being reduced to a minimum, everyone wants to succeed and obtain results in shorter time frames. With little information available, team performance is likely to drop.
  • The degree of information available influences the organization’s capacity to obtain results since decisions are made based on the available data and expert insight.
  • Many companies are also producing more knowledge than ever before and most of this knowledge is impacting various areas of the company. Yet, no clear mechanisms are in place in order to secure knowledge capture and transfer.
  • The success of many projects depends on a company wide performance. Usually projects or business units would look out for their individual performance, but now everyone is called upon to think strategically and help one another.
  • And finally, because everything traduces in time and money which is clearly wasted when everyone spends times reinventing the wheel!

From our experience developing knowledge bases we have found out that:

  • Providing team members with the right information helps boost team performance by reducing the time it takes to carry out certain activities and decision making.
  • Giving teams the autonomy to create documentation and give feedback to other members helps create dynamic environments for team work. And they really enjoy doing it!
  • Focusing on strategic knowledge at first gives you various advantages. Starting from the point that you carefully align content with the company’s objectives.
  • Centralizing access to key resources does not only help employees. Clients can benefit by having access to important documentation such as Wikis, Q&As and manuals.
  • Building effective teams also requires flexible work environments where collaboration is not limited to physical spaces. Let your team creativity flow by using knowledge bases in order to help connect teams with one another.
  • Knowledge bases help ensure that content is kept updated as teams can curate content anytime- anywhere.
  • Cloud based knowledge bases help reduce important costs associated with maintenance and installation. Besides, since they are cloud based implementation is almost immediate.
  • Guaranteeing support from the whole organization’s demands sponsorship and a call from above so that employees start to comprehend the benefits.
  • Knowledge bases can support your company’s onboarding process as employees can access vital information and connect with other team specialists.

The above points might be hard to understand if you’re thinking knowledge base = virtual information warehouse. However, knowledge base development has come a long way in recent years and now resembles more than just a place to store your information. Knowledge bases help create virtual learning and work environments by providing team members with valuable tools and information that will help them get their work done. They can even create documents, manuals and FAQs in real time and practically from any device.

Finally, an essential point to note is that if an organization is to be fully effective, every part of the company needs to contribute to the knowledge base. Shared responsibility for content is vital as everyone will be required to generate content and not just use it. Business leaders need to constantly lead change and help store strategic knowledge in the most suitable form in order to guarantee success.

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By Sameer Bhatia,  founder & CEO of ProProfs.

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