Knowledge management allows organisations to improve internal efficiencies by developing resources and systems, but it can also have a powerful impact on your customer experience (CX). By working to ensure continuity and growth of knowledge throughout your organisation you will find it easier to deliver a consistent and improving customer experience throughout your customer journey.
1. Making the Intangible Tangible
Your organisation’s knowledge is one of its most valuable assets, but it can be one of the most difficult to measure. Documentation, in the form of lessons learned databases or expert directories for example, converts knowledge into a tangible resource that can be shared readily with new team members, or with consultants coming into the organisation.
This ensures that new members of your organisation can present a consistent service and experience to your customers. When problems arise, it also means they have access to the resources they need to resolve situations quickly, ideally before a customer even sees them.
2. Preserving Organisational KNowledge
For many organisations, knowledge resources only exist within the minds of the staff. This means that not only is knowledge hard to pin down, but it can literally walk out of the door into your competitors hands. In the so-called 'Resource-based view', this means that the knowledge can never fulfill the 'VRIN' characteristics needed to make it a sustainable competitive advantage for the organisation:
Valuable - it must add create value.
Rare - it must be hard to come by.
In-imitable - it must be difficult to imitate.
Non-substitutable - it must be difficult to find an alternative.
Ensuring that leavers can’t take vital information with them isn’t simply a matter for handover notes; it should be a continuous process of communication. Understanding current processes within your organisation can help you highlight potential customer-facing issues, or identify opportunities for improved service. What’s more, tried and tested methods mean that new members to your team don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time they come up against an issue.
3. Learning from your Mistakes
By documenting historical lessons learned, you can avoid repeating the same mistakes that might earn you a negative reputation with your customers. For example, if your eCommerce website crashed during Black Friday sales one year, understanding why it happened should help you prepare your hosting provision for similar potentially busy periods, even if your staff have changed significantly in the intervening timeframe.
4. Preparing you for Growth
Process can also help you to codify knowledge. This means that methods and techniques can change become an advantage for the whole organisation, with the power to scale as your business grows. Again, this kind of preparation can ensure that you don’t let your customers down at a crucial time of business growth.
5. Finding New Opportunities
Every organisation develops silos at some point during its growth, but some of the world’s most successful brands use silo-busting as a way to improve CX. It’s well known that many of Google’s major tools, including Google Maps and Google Mail, came out of the organisation’s 20% time project. Expert directories empower team members with big ideas to go out across the business and create new ways to improve customer experience such as customer journey mapping or new service creation.
Knowledge management and customer experience are both complex systems requiring expert integration. Our team of specialised technology consultants can help you plan, integrate and roll out systems and processes that will transform your business.