What is a ‘Knowledge Base’ and how can it make you more productive?

Jeffrey Dunn
Nov 27, 2015 · 3 min read

Understanding what a knowledge base software (or KB software) is fairly simple. A knowledge base is a term that normally infers a database of structured and unstructured information that is kept in a computer system. Such data is useful in the daily operation of the business. This system is basically supposed to make retrieval of information easy and convenient for any of the relevant stakeholders to the data that is stored in it.

Why Use A Knowledge Base?

There are a number of situations that manifest in the organization on a day to day basis, situations that end up in lost time, lost track of resources and by the end of the day, contributing to your losses. Many organizations go through this from time to time, with the employees spending more time on mundane tasks than they are supposed to. Things that are supposed to take a few minutes end up dragging for more than they should.

3 Quick Case Studies

The following are some situations that are common in most organizations, which are a clear indication of time and resources being wasted, and hence hampering employee productivity. Discover how an employee knowledge base can help:

Case 1: A staff member has to submit a support ticket and wait for the support staff to go through it, determine where it should fall and send it to the relevant personnel to determine how to handle it, and when.

Case 2: Staff members having to go through pages of manuals to learn how to operate a particular equipment that has just been installed, while at the same time, they have to attend to customers who are waiting for feedback.

Case 3: A client is on the line, while the support staff has to go through lots of web pages looking for resources that might help them address the client’s concerns appropriately.

Some of these situations might sound so far-fetched, but perhaps only because companies hardly ever tell you what really goes on behind the scenes. The employees, and in particular support staff and customer service department guys will attest to the fact that these are but the tip of the iceberg. The challenges that they face on a daily basis are incredible.

What we see here is a situation where ineffectiveness is constantly propagated in the business, to the point where the members of staff accept it and welcome it. It becomes a way of life, something that they get used to and have to live with every other day.

Knowledge base systems are built to put an end to this perpetual appreciation of failure. Business systems are supposed to be dynamic, presenting customers and your staff with a new and better way of doing things.

The case scenarios that we have seen above are issues that can easily be addressed by installing and implementing a good knowledge base system in the workplace. In all the instances that we have seen above, there is a lot of time wastage.

In the first instance, the knowledge base system would simply prompt an error report to the relevant department and someone would act on the issue immediately.

In the second scenario, the user only needs to open the manual page in the system and use Ctrl + F and within a short while they will have all the information that they need.

For the third scenario, access to the FAQ section on your website is all the client needs and you might probably have to deal with less calls from customers, unless they have pressing issues which have not been addressed in the FAQ section.

What’s Next

Over the years we have addressed the need for improving employee productivity, and through knowledge base systems, this is possible. Lots of companies have worked around this for years and are now reaping the benefits.

Improving employee productivity is one of the most important things that a lot of businesses focus on, and the results are evident in the nature of customer relations and interactions with your staff.

Jeffrey Dunn

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