“Enterprise knowledge is mostly unstructured, so it’s difficult to find what you want without accurate categorization, and then you want those results presented intuitively with the ability to navigate quickly to other relevant content,” adds Trussler. Fortunately, several new technologies are emerging that can make KM more effective and easier to deliver. Trussler emphasizes, in particular, the value of autoclassification of content based on semantic AI, and the recent innovations in user-friendly content navigation and search.
Iknow has worked extensively with several clients on semantic web technologies and autoclassification. “We are using both commercial tools, like Smartlogic Semaphore, and open-source alternatives, like Alfresco Community Edition and Apache Jena,” says Trussler. According to Trussler, “Categorization of knowledge using taxonomies and term sets has always been very important for KM, but semantic technologies can really turbo-charge it, through greater scalability and by dramatically improving the relevance and consistency of results.” Many of Iknow’s clients have document libraries with millions of files, making manual tagging impossible. Still, automated tools can quickly do the job, opening these huge troves of know-how to the whole organization.
Just as important as accurate categorization is the ability to navigate easily and discover relevant knowledge beyond the original search query.
New enterprise navigation, search, and collaboration platforms help significantly here, enabling truly user-centered KM solutions. Microsoft has led the way with the innovations in the 365 suite, especially SharePoint Modern and Microsoft Teams, and Iknow works extensively with these tools. “Microsoft has made it much quicker and easier to build KM search and topic navigation sites, once you have well-categorized libraries and lists to work with,” says Trussler. “These sites can include a rich search experience using semantic browsing, metadata-based refiners, search verticals, and multiple sorting options. You can also build automated term-driven pages that provide a valuable and up-to-date summary of an enterprise’s knowledge within a specific topic area.”
We help set the strategy and then make sure that all of the requirements are in place, including technology
As the most established and well-known boutique consultancy focused on KM, Iknow has a highly successful track record in KM project delivery. The company has completed more than 200 significant client assignments across various industries, government organizations, and nonprofits. “We manage our own internal knowledge in the same ways that we advocate to our clients,” adds Trussler, “and based on all of those projects, there is a very rich pool of experience to draw on.” Iknow’s senior-level team members’ experience includes global KM leadership roles and consulting, so they understand the organizational and process challenges of effective KM and what it takes to deliver. “We help set the strategy and then make sure that all of the requirements are in place, including technology,” says Trussler.
Iknow continues to develop its services and expertise, especially the links between team collaboration and longer-term knowledge management. “This is becoming even more critical with the growth in remote work, and we need to make it go better,” concludes Trussler.