How to manage and maintain your knowledge base

A knowledge base is one of the easiest, cheapest ways to keep customers happy and also retain the knowledge that your customer service agents have learnt. Unlike other channels of communication, it’s free for customers to use and easy to record internal knowledge for your agents. It’s also a perfect medium for high-volumes and simple interactions, it can deflect incoming phone calls into your support department, and it’s always available.

Who should create articles

Creating articles is tough, and not because it’s a hard thing to do, but no one wants to.  Hiring outside is an option but the challenge you will face is that the person you bring on board will not be a subject matter expert and they will create articles with little or no understanding of the content.  Writing articles is an essential part of the customer experience and for your agents and thus should be treated as important as a customer interaction. Encourage your subject matter experts (typically your agents) to create articles from previous case notes, create new articles from new cases, and incentivise them by monetary bonuses or gift cards. Every case deflection is a cost savings to you and is one less customer to support.

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Create quality articles by reviewing them

For most cases, there should be a mechanism in place to allow a more experienced subject matter expert to review the content that’s being authored. Creating lots of articles is half the battle, but bad articles can be just as detrimental to deflecting cases into your support organization as having no articles.  Make sure every article is reviewed and edited by an expert before being published internally or externally.

Review and retire articles

Once you have an efficient process in creating articles and have a good base of knowledge for your customers to reference, you need to make sure your content is up to date, relevant, and accurate.  This can be a challenge but a proper knowledge base system can handle this for you.  If you are not lucky enough to have a system that can manage articles, then a process needs to be put in place to review articles every so often on their anniversary.  This can be tedious but once the process is in place it will ensure you have a useful, relevant, and a knowledge base that is used and referenced by your customers.

Listen to the comments

Once your articles have been reviewed and published, your customers will start rating and commenting on your articles.  This is an incredibly important tool for you to gauge if your articles are useful and well written.  Listen to your customers and action on ratings and comments, you might think your article is amazing but if a customer can’t follow or finds that it’s inaccurate, then it needs to be reviewed and potentially removed.