Knowledge Management

Knowledge falls into two main types: explicit knowledge that can be written down, and tacit knowledge that can only be learnt from tens of thousands of hours of experience.
Relaying explicit knowledge, passing it from person to person, from generation to generation, is not unique to humans, but in such abundance is a crucial difference.
In IT it is critical to record processes, to provide in-line help in software, and more detailed knowledge base information for power users.
Here's an example: one day the Infrastructure Manager was 'fighting a fire'; their number two was fighting another fire; so was I: the need for another emergency change arose. I made the decision to pass the relevant protocol to the novice on my team, the only person available at the time: "follow this as best you can and ask me when you're not sure". They did the job perfectly, no QA push-back, and didn't ask for any help. Without that written protocol, that emergency change would have needed to wait.
In another case, the monthly review of support tickets indicated a clear pattern that although information to answer customer's questions was available in the customer knowledge base, they were still sending in tickets to the help desk. Each of these tickets represented a loss of opportunity to work on projects, but support needed to react within service level agreements. Three actions were recommended:
1: Give the requested answer, and if it was already in the knowledge base, diplomatically link to the article.
2: Give the requested answer, but if it was not in the knowledge base, log to a queue to later add to the knowledge base, allocate 20% of one person's time to updating the knowledge base, then let the customer know when added, with a link to the article, thanking them for asking the question.
3: Send out periodic notifications, alerting all subscribers to new additions to the knowledge base.
Gradually the knowledge base become the first place more people would check; "User Education" ticket numbers went down, and projects were completed quicker.
Knowledge base SaaS recommendation: see KnowledgeOwl
For more information on how we can help you with improving IT knowledge management, please write to