If productivity is a top priority, there is a good chance you will conduct research into the features and benefits of a knowledge management program. Cloud-based knowledge management (KM) solutions are changing the game, allowing organizations to give their teams an easier way to publish information, find content, and connect with other departments, all in an effort to create an efficient internal (and external) knowledge sharing program.
With so many organizations — small, medium, and large — all jumping on the knowledge sharing train, more and more SaaS (software as a service) KM tools are emerging. So, how do you know if you are investing in the right knowledge sharing software solution?
Identify The Problems In Your Current Knowledge Sharing Program
You may already have some knowledge sharing or knowledge management processes already in place, but if you’re reading this, you might be experiencing some problems. Starting today, commit to driving change in the way your company organizes and shares company knowledge. Most importantly, be honest and realistic about the current challenges your team is facing.
To help identify the biggest gaps, ask yourself the following questions:
- How easy is it to locate the information you need?
- Are you still losing knowledge when people leave the company?
- Is employee engagement an issue?
- Is training cumbersome and hindering adoption?
- Are old habits interfering with efficiencies?
- Is there a disconnect between teams?
- Is our data currently being segmented and supplied to the right people?
- What do we want out of our new knowledge management system? Is it reasonable?
These insights will help identify what you like about your current system, what is lacking, and where you’d like to see improvements.
What Knowledge Sharing Components Do You Really Need?
Once you’ve asked yourself the questions above, it’s time to get into the details and identity your system requirements. Understanding the difference between the components you need vs. those that are nice to have is key to choosing the right KM system. Some of the questions you might ask yourself and your team include:
- What made you consider new knowledge sharing software in the first place?
- What knowledge management components are you currently using, if any?
- Are you using multiple systems to get the job done?
- Do you need a place to exclusively share documents?
- Do you want to gauge employee engagement with content?
- Do your users need to collaborate in real time?
- Have you considered a system with machine learning to make your search comprehensive and straightforward?
How Much Do You Have To Invest? What Is The ROI?
Of course, money talks, and ultimately investing in knowledge sharing software often comes down to costs vs. benefits. While it’s obvious to look at the subscription cost of each possible solution, the knowledge management ROI includes much more.
When you compare KM SaaS solutions, consider a full cost-benefit analysis. How much time will your organization have to invest in training employees to use the new system? How much time will your employees save in the long run? What are the benefits of a knowledge sharing program for your sales teams? If this isn’t the right solution, how much time are you going to waste retraining on a new system later?
While the knowledge management solutions available may seem comparable, straightforward, and streamlined, you really want to make sure you are paying for knowledge sharing components that are going to meet your goals and solve your company’s knowledge organization challenges. The final step in finding the right solution is to book a demo call. See the product in action and understand its full capabilities to ensure you are investing in the right product the first time.