Delivering exceptional customer service is now a competitive imperative for companies rather than a nice-to-have. With so many options, customers have high standards and expectations when engaging with brands. If the service experience falls short, they have no qualms switching to competitors who can better meet their needs. This makes knowledge management a strategic priority for contact centres. In fact, it has become so popular that 88% of people now expect companies to have an online self-service portal.
Equipping agents with comprehensive, accurate information is crucial for resolving inquiries swiftly, consistently, and satisfactorily. The right knowledge management system arms the contact centre to deliver the high-quality experiences customers demand in order to build loyalty and trust.
What is Knowledge Management?
Knowledge management refers to the strategies, processes, and tools organisations use to identify, create, organise, share, and enable adoption of insights and information. For a contact centre, the main knowledge management system is the knowledge base – an organised repository of articles covering products, services, processes, policies, troubleshooting guides, and frequently asked questions.
Benefits of Knowledge Management
Faster Issue Resolution
With relevant information readily available, agents can diagnose and troubleshoot problems faster instead of having to research or ask managers. Customers get answers quickly without extended hold times. A study by Coleman Parkers concluded that 91% of people would use an online knowledge base if it were available and tailored to their needs. In other words, build your knowledge base with customers in mind and they will come. Not only will they use it, but in doing so, they’ll develop a stronger relationship with your company.
Improved First Contact Resolution
Equipped with a comprehensive knowledge base, agents are able to resolve more customer issues during the first interaction. This eliminates frustrating back-and-forths for the customer. 45% of organisations that offer online self-service options saw an increase in website traffic and a reduction in phone inquiries.
Standardised content in the knowledge base ensures customers receive consistent information regardless of which agent helps them. This enables uniform service delivery.
Reduced Training Time
Onboarding new hires is accelerated when they can reference detailed information in the knowledge base instead of learning solely through classroom training.
Increased Agent Productivity
Less time spent searching for answers means agents can handle more customer interactions. This optimises contact centre resources and boosts agent productivity.
Enhanced Customer Self-Service
Integrating the knowledge base with self-service channels provides customers with 24/7 access to information for resolving simple inquiries independently.
Key Features of a Knowledge Management System
Comprehensive Content Library
The knowledge base should cover all common customer questions, issues, products, services, and key processes. Content gaps lead to long search times and unresolved inquiries.
Logical Structure and Organisation
Information should be meticulously organised in intuitive categories that make sense to agents. Robust search and effective metadata simplifies content discovery.
Smart Self-Service Tools
Incorporate chatbots and virtual assistants to guide customers to the right knowledge base articles. This enables swift self-service contact deflection.
Make knowledge base content available across all channels including email, social media, web, mobile, and messaging. This promotes consistent service anywhere customers engage.
Proactively display relevant articles based on the customer inquiry to eliminate searching. Refine recommendations over time using machine learning algorithms.
Built-in Support and Training
Embed “helper” widgets that overlay relevant knowledge base articles within agent desktop apps. This delivers bite-sized learning within workflows.
Analyse knowledge base usage metrics to identify poorly searched content. Rework or remove outdated, redundant, or low-value articles.
Overcoming Implementation Challenges
Launching a new knowledge management system presents challenges. Following best practices helps ensure success:
- Audit existing information assets before migrating to the new knowledge base. Weed out outdated, inaccurate, or redundant data.
- Develop succinct, scannable content with ample visuals. Avoid dense walls of complex text.
- Establish clear taxonomy and structure standards early on. This maintains organisation as the knowledge base grows.
- Implement scheduled content reviews to keep articles current. Subject matter experts should check for revisions needed due to changes.
- Provide knowledge base training and support tools to boost adoption and utilisation.
- Continuously optimise content based on usage metrics to maximise value.
Empowering Customers and Agents
As this article in Forrester explains, customers today expect brands to “know them, understand them, and respond to their needs.” An optimised knowledge management system delivers this by providing both customers and agents with on-demand access to consistent, accurate information.
Self-service options boost customer satisfaction by giving people multiple channels to independently find solutions. Integrating the knowledge base with self-help tools like chatbots increases first-contact resolution while decreasing call volume.
For companies seeking to improve knowledge management, Cirrus offers an award-winning AI-powered knowledge management solution purpose-built for the contact centre. To learn more about how Cirrus can help you enhance productivity and deliver exceptional customer experiences, request a demo today.