The work is finished — you’ve successfully introduced a knowledge management system at your company and anchored new knowledge processes in the departments. Editors are submitting new knowledge content on a regular basis, updating information, and answering feedback. Your company uses the common pool of data to provide service and your staff can now find answers quicker. Traveling service technicians can even access important company knowledge via a mobile app. Is something missing? Yes, because it’s easy to network your knowledge. One of the main strengths of knowledge management solutions is their integration of knowledge content into the organization’s other systems. Important information is maintained in a central repository and then distributed to wherever it is needed.
Modern knowledge management provides a single source of truth that can be connected to existing help desk, ticketing, and CRM software, or even chat solutions. This way, all information is kept current and maintained at a single location while the content is transmitted directly to the systems employees work with or even straight to the customer. Oftentimes a knowledge management solution will supply apps and integrations for major software systems on the market or allow customers to integrate proprietary applications via APIs (application programming interfaces).
Why integrations are so important
Integrating software systems normally takes up a significant amount of time, particularly for the IT organization and the respective business unit. Consequently, integration projects are often de-prioritized. But this way, software silos can develop, resulting in an IT free-for-all that no one wants to deal with. This can hobble an enterprise, preventing growth. Companies with software silos have a number of challenges to deal with:
provide a clear source of data and information, nor do they offer transparency.
Work is often inefficient, mistakes are frequently made, and work is accomplished more slowly.
Companies that enjoy integrated software landscapes have a major competitive advantage in the market. Employees are able to react far more quickly to customer inquiries when they have direct access to information in a ticketing system that has been integrated with the knowledge management system. Or they are able to efficiently give the customer the right information while in a chat session because they are able to access it directly themselves while chatting, for instance in an integrated window that doesn’t force them to switch to a separate system. Customers can also directly benefit from integrations, for instance when used as part of a website.
Integrations on websites — helping customers directly
Wouldn’t it be great if simple customer inquiries could be avoided with targeted web FAQs and self-service areas, allowing customers to help themselves without having to wait on hold? More and more companies are offering their customers information in the form of FAQs on their websites. Because experience shows that customers tend to choose this channel instead of dialing the customer service number. This makes it all the more important for service-focused companies to not allow knowledge to be locked away in silos. With integrations such as the performance API from SABIO, organizational knowledge can be consistently maintained and targeted towards the needs of customers. You can for instance provide a help center for your customers or integrate an FAQ in your service app. Reports give you insights into the search preferences of your customers and how customers rate the quality of your content.
Here’s an example: A European parcel service outputs information from the SABIO knowledge management system directly into the customer’s app. Any time a customer has a question during the ordering process, they can access the FAQs in the app to receive context-based answers to frequent questions. For instance, how much is my package allowed to weigh? The answers were submitted by editors to the knowledge management system, which also provides the service center employees detailed answers. If information changes, it is updated for both employees and customers.
Doing integrations the right way
Knowledge management systems are normally not yet completely integrated at the start of a project when they go live. The simple reason for this is that the consolidation of existing sources of knowledge should be the first step taken to create a reliable source of knowledge. Once this first step has been taken and the support for agents providing daily customer service has been ensured, then integrations for instance with a CRM system, ticketing system, or external systems such as for instance self-service, FAQ, or chat solutions can be created as necessary using flexible and open interfaces.
Connections create the future
Knowledge management in particular is more than simply a standalone solution that just creates its own new data silo. It serves as a single source of truth within a networked, fully integrated system landscape. In this way, knowledge management supports the long-term development of the company. So make sure when developing your knowledge management that your company knowledge is and remains usable in many different ways.
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