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Knowledge Management

BluWave Support Solutions has created Forefront, a Knowledge Management Strategy that addresses multiple, critical areas of KM. Read on to learn more.
Knowledge Management

Knowledge Management can be quite an overwhelming task to take on. No matter what your purpose behind the initiative (a competitive advantage, increased organizational effectiveness, financial savings, improved customer service, etc.), the advantages that can be derived from the strategy are numerous. And if executed properly, the entire company, not just a single organization, can reap the benefits. At the same time, not creating the proper scope for each area of the overall program can guarantee certain failure.

In order to create focused quadrants within a specific KM strategy, BluWave has developed a model named ForeFront. This model focuses on electronic interaction and information discovery, the implementation of a core Knowledge Management application, integrating and building the support process around processes, procedures and methodologies, and ensuring that all team members involved in Knowledge Management understand and follow the proper workflows, have the correct level(s) of training, and can apply certain standards regarding knowledge creation.

Web-based Technologies, the Website, and the Customer Portal
The first area of focus is the first point of contact for a majority of customers—the website and/or portal. Having a lot of answers available for customers doesn’t necessarily solve their problems — The customers need to find the right answers, and they need to find them quickly. A well designed website can provide customers with multiple solution paths (also known as “multi-channel”) that will allow them to resolve their problems with experiencing self-service dead ends. And with adaptive technologies, the customer experience can also be customized based on the products or solutions that they own.

The Knowledge Management (KM) Application and Infrastructure
Several companies offer KM applications that create the foundational basis for a Knowledge Management strategy, but specifically from an application perspective. The KM applications on the market today provide content development tools, publishing tools, workflow management, and other key KM functions. One of the most critical parts of a KM strategy is to ensure that the application(s) chosen will integrate with current and future processes and procedures, and that the workflows within the application can fulfill the company’s requirements for content management and publishing.

Process, Procedure, and Methodology
No matter what products, applications or infrastructures are put in place, they become only as strong as the weakest point within the organization. In order for KM to be successful, it is critical that the processes, procedures, and methodologies implemented achieve the primary goals of the organization and are not totally dependent on the KM application to achieve them. The team members of an organization should have absolute clarity as to what is required in order to meet the goals of the organization. This requires clearly defined and well documented steps for any and all interactions within the organization as well as any interaction with customers. Providing consistent support to your customers will amaze them.

Workflows, Training, and Standards
As mentioned previously, it is critical to have all processes, procedures and methodologies fully documented. When this is accomplished, standard workflows can be implemented in order to provide consistency internally and externally, which helps increase efficiency within the organization. Workflows become a core component of KM and are fully integrated with the KM application for customer support flows, content management, and case management. It is also imperative that all team members involved with KM are properly and continually trained, and that training is a fundamental building block of the Knowledge Management Strategy. Without the proper training and certification, your team members will not have established standards that they can follow. At BluWave, we believe that every team member can contribute to a successful organization, but they need to know what is expected. Setting the standards for processes such as case management, escalations, content development and solution management gives your employees what they need.