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Information Silos: Why They Are Bad and How to Fix Them preview image

Knowledge Audit: What Is It & Why Is It Important?

Knowledge management

Knowledge Audit: What Is It & Why Is It Important?
A knowledge audit examines an organization's knowledge requirements and how its leadership, organization, technology, and learning can work together to meet those needs. Instead of focusing on numbers, it examines what people in an organization know, how well they know it, and how they share that knowledge. When there is no clear structure for sharing information within a company, people start working in isolation. The result: information silos and duplicate work—leading to inefficiency and wasted productivity. The purpose of a knowledge audit is to show hard evidence of what knowledge an organization requires, its location, how it is used, any challenges and obstacles that exist, and what can be done to improve the flow of things. 4 Components of a Knowledge Audit 1. Knowledge Needs Analysis A knowledge needs analysis is a way to figure out what knowledge people and organizations already know and what other knowledge requirements they may need to be more productive. A knowledge needs analysis will help a company develop an effective knowledge management strategy by highlighting basic requirements and showing areas for improvement. 2. Knowledge Inventory Analysis A knowledge inventory analysis aims to find, record, index, and categorize the organization's existing explicit and tacit knowledge assets. Because explicit knowledge is physical, solid, and generally documented, this analysis may be carried out by looking at where the knowledge is located, how it is organized and accessed, its relevance, and its uses. During an audit, being unable to find documentation can pose serious problems. Document management software can make finding and managing your files easier. In contrast, the analysis of tacit knowledge could be based on people's knowledge and expertise. This can be done by looking at employee directories, their academic and professional degrees, skills, and experience. This analysis helps an organization uncover knowledge gaps and duplicates by comparing its results to a knowledge needs analysis. 3. Knowledge Flow Analysis This is a look into how knowledge flows from where it is to where it is needed. For example, the analysis could look into the organization's policies and practices for web publishing, managing records, or data handling. A knowledge flow analysis will demonstrate how people behave and think when sharing knowledge and highlight good and poor practices. It also involves studying the degree to which people use knowledge daily. When it comes to technology, the focus should be on the systems being used, such as portals and content management, as well as how accessible they are, how easy they are to use, and how frequently they are used. 4. Knowledge Mapping Knowledge mapping is the visualization of sources, flows, barriers, and sinks of knowledge within an organization. It's an impactful guide that shows relationships and dynamics. It also helps better define people's roles, like who creates knowledge, who collects it, or who uses it. It can influence how organizations see knowledge and help them focus on viable opportunities. How to Conduct a Knowledge Audit You can run a knowledge audit through the following steps: Identify Your Objective Setting objectives before you start can help you explicitly state the purpose of your audit and direct you toward the kind of information you should gather.Form an Audit Team Choose the right people to be part of your knowledge audit team. Ensure you include various stakeholders for accuracy. If it's a team audit, you might want to involve a few members who you think will have valuable input.Compile and Catalog Existing Knowledge In this crucial step, you need to make an inventory of the existing knowledge available in your organization and where it is located (i.e., intranet, shared drives, documentation platforms, etc.).Examine the Flow of Knowledge This is where you study how knowledge is shared. Ask yourself, "How do employees access information?" and "Who are they sharing it with?"Spot Obstacles and Gaps As you progress through these steps, you may notice gaps and barriers such as duplicates or knowledge hoarding that impede the flow of knowledge. Here, you can also identify methods that will improve knowledge sharing. Benefits of a Knowledge Audit A knowledge audit improves your organization by uncovering gaps and obstacles in one's internal knowledge base, allowing you to identify areas for improvement. It will help to recognize and avoid duplicates in the future. Additionally, creating a shared understanding of how to use knowledge management processes will help teams stay in sync and better understand how much knowledge is available, where it is stored, and how much more is required. Deliverables & Outputs of a Knowledge Audit While deliverables and outputs may vary, generally, a knowledge audit should: Establish what knowledge an organization needs to attain its goalsHelp assess the significance of knowledge and its contribution to the organization's performanceOffer evidence of how well knowledge is handled and areas where adjustments should be madeIdentify untapped knowledge areasCreate knowledge and social network mapsExamine the usage of external knowledge and identify better ways to use it
Overcome the Dangers of Knowledge Hoarding in the Workplace

Knowledge management

Overcome the Dangers of Knowledge Hoarding in the Workplace
The problem of knowledge hoarding has become a growing concern in today's workplace. When employees hoard knowledge, they intentionally withhold critical information from their colleagues and the organization for personal or professional reasons. Knowledge hoarding can also be costly for the organization. According to a study by International Data Corp, Fortune 500 companies lose approximately $31.5 billion annually by failing to share knowledge among individuals and across teams. Why Employees Hoard Knowledge Some reasons why employees might hoard knowledge include: Leverage An employee might believe that possessing something others lack gives them power—in this case, knowledge. For instance, having certain knowledge could give someone an upper hand or make them a star performer, solidifying their position as a valuable team member. Similarly, if they are the only person in the team or company who understands how to handle unique challenges, they would be indispensable or immune to layoffs. Fear It's no secret that people don't like to be wrong. For example, someone working on a project may discover something that will make it better—but instead of sharing this knowledge, they keep it to themselves for fear of rejection or ridicule from colleagues and supervisors. Because of this fear, valuable knowledge is lost, and potentially innovative ideas are never realized. Competition Competition is a great motivator, but it also comes with its cons, especially in organizations with a culture of unhealthy competition. When employees are rewarded for individual victories rather than team achievements, they may be more likely to keep any valuable knowledge to themselves to stay at the top of the ranks. Trust Issues Unfortunately, about 1 in 4 employees do not trust their employers. Layoffs, benefit cuts, and job insecurity can all contribute to distrust. Furthermore, rivalry within teams may cause workers to mistrust team members, leading to knowledge hoarding. Potential Consequences of Knowledge Hoarding Employees who hoard information do the business or organization a great disservice. Knowledge hoarding impedes corporate growth in many ways: Teams or individuals may end up causing knowledge and information silos, which hamper efficiency. Employees who do not have the knowledge they need may waste significant working hours looking for it or creating it from scratch.Without a refined system for knowledge management, you risk losing the expertise or tacit knowledge when an employee leaves.Employees who cannot work due to knowledge setbacks might be frustrated and quit the company.It will impede the onboarding of new talent, or new employees may struggle to transition to their new positions. Benefits of Knowledge Sharing In contrast to knowledge hoarding, knowledge sharing offers companies a multitude of benefits. Encouraging a culture of knowledge sharing means everyone on the team feels like they have access to the tools needed to succeed—and more importantly, it means that everyone is motivated by team success. A knowledge-sharing culture provides companies with the following benefits: It fosters a culture of learning where employees want to take part in sharing and obtaining knowledge actively.There is improved productivity and efficiency since employees have access to knowledge and do not have to wait for a specific person to finish their tasks.It helps to heighten employee engagement and, in turn, reduce employee turnover. Collaboration is encouraged, where employees openly communicate with their peers instead of working in silos. How to Prevent Knowledge Hoarding Make It Easy to Share Knowledge Sharing knowledge can often be time-consuming. If just one individual has the knowledge, they'll have to keep explaining the same thing repeatedly, which is time away from more valuable tasks. In the absence of a system, some employees may become frustrated when searching for the necessary information. A knowledge management system (KMS) can promote knowledge sharing by centralizing all relevant information, making it easy for team members to collaborate and access information from any location. However, with all the ways data can be stolen, it's essential to understand the risks and take steps to protect yourself. Having data center security measures in place can help protect vital company information from getting into the wrong hands. Provide Clear Guidelines One of the best approaches to counteract knowledge hoarding in your organization is to teach employees how to share their knowledge. As part of your knowledge management strategy, your company should adopt a user-friendly KMS and take employees on a walkthrough so they feel comfortable making it a part of their routine. Additionally, proper document management of your guidelines can help make this process a breeze every time new employees are onboarded. Reward Those Who Share Knowledge Because knowledge sharing isn't natural for everyone, you might need to give your employees an incentive to share. You can encourage healthy competition by holding a contest and rewarding everyone who adds to your internal knowledge base within a certain deadline. Incentives don't have to be extravagant, but they should be something your employees want.
5 Steps to Developing a Knowledge Management Strategy

Knowledge management

5 Steps to Developing a Knowledge Management Strategy
A knowledge management (KM) strategy is a comprehensive and actionable plan that organizations implement to manage and centralize their institutional knowledge. It aims to significantly improve the organization, employee productivity, and product or service quality. Knowledge management strategies work best when they align with the organization's overarching goals and strategy. Importance of a Knowledge Management Strategy It is estimated that ineffective knowledge sharing costs large US companies $47 million in productivity yearly. If your team wastes time at work waiting for knowledge from other staff members or having to recreate it because they couldn't access information, it will cost you in terms of project delays and missed opportunities. Furthermore, it can also lead to employee dissatisfaction. A knowledge management strategy addresses the problem of information silos. This will help boost employee productivity since they will waste less time searching or waiting for information. In turn, it will improve your team's understanding of knowledge management and encourage sharing of best knowledge management practices. A successful KM strategy can provide a strong business case for innovative solutions that could improve your organization, such as encouraging product or service development. How to Develop a Knowledge Management Strategy in 5 Steps 1. Establish Your Objectives To start, outline and document your objectives. By outlining these goals, you can design a roadmap for accomplishing them and ensure your team knows their roles and the expectations that are to be met. This will allow them to work towards similar goals without overlapping or conflicting with one another's efforts. You can further categorize your goals as either short-term or long-term, depending on how important they are to fulfilling your company's knowledge requirements. 2. Assess Your Current State There is no template or blueprint for knowledge management since a KM strategy needs to be tailored to your business goals. To make it feasible and successful for your organization, you first need a deep understanding of your current state. A typical assessment should outline where you are currently, any gaps in the process, and proposals for addressing those gaps. It must also address the five fundamental components of knowledge management, which are: People Don't forget to consider the end user. Adoption will be low if your plan fails to assist users or meet their needs. Determine who they are, what information they need to operate effectively, and how they share knowledge or what prevents them from doing so. Processes You will want to look into the current processes within the organization and each business unit. Then you'll have to see whether those are applied and followed. Your analysis should expose the gaps and show how these processes work in real life—whether employees find them efficient or taxing. Technology It is vital to be conversant with the systems that are in place, including how they work, who uses them, what their limits are, and where they are in their lifecycle. Content Doing a content analysis will help you find gaps, irrelevant content, potential security risks, inefficient processes, and other areas that need to be remedied. Culture How employees capture, manage, and share knowledge depends on the company's culture. You might ask, "Is there a culture of knowledge sharing within the organization, or do people hoard knowledge?" 3. Define Your Knowledge Management Strategy Show how you seek to incorporate KM with the overarching objectives of your organization. There are many parts to an effective knowledge management strategy, such as: Capture and Organize Information Organize and categorize information in your internal knowledge base so it is easily accessible. Proper document management can aid in this endeavor. Distribute and Exchange Knowledge Standardize how your employees can access and share knowledge with their colleagues. Information that no one can see or access is technically worthless. Establish a Search-First Mindset If people don't explore the knowledge base and instead ask repetitive questions, it will discourage others from documenting information since the mindset will be that no one searches for it anyway. Facilitate Collaboration It would be a massive undertaking for any organization to achieve its objectives if just a few people contributed to its knowledge base. Therefore, make sure to choose a knowledge management system that promotes cooperation. Analyze and Identify Gaps Building internal knowledge is an ongoing process. Therefore, evaluating usage and identifying areas that can be further improved is essential. 4. Identify Technology Needs It is important to choose up-to-date knowledge management software as part of an effective electronic management system that satisfies the requirements of your organization. Archaic technologies can impede your knowledge management efforts. Check for any preferences within the team and go for one that boosts employee confidence. Furthermore, check for data center security measures to reduce data integrity risks and protect the company from data breaches. 5. Lay Out Your Action Plan Lay out how you intend to implement your strategy to help remove ambiguity from the process. This will also give you a clear overview of the resources (such as people, technology, and financing) needed to meet your KM strategy objectives. With that, it's time to put your approach into action, analyze the results, and make adjustments based on what you've learned.
How to Integrate Asana With Confluence

Productivity

How to Integrate Asana With Confluence
Asana is an application that enables team collaboration for projects of all sizes. It has a user-friendly interface and allows team members to track tasks, deadlines, and progress. Asana also integrates with other applications, such as Google Drive and Dropbox—making it a versatile project management tool. On the other hand, Confluence is an application that enables users to collaborate on projects and helps improve document sharing. It provides a central location for organizing files and information and allows users to share ideas and work together on projects. Confluence is used by businesses and organizations of all sizes to improve communication and collaboration. The Differences Between Asana and Confluence Asana and Confluence are both project management tools, but they have different features. Asana is designed for team communication and collaboration, while Confluence is designed for creating and publishing content. Asana has a simple, clean interface that makes it easy to create and manage tasks. You can create projects and assign tasks to team members, then track the progress of the project. Asana also includes a chat function that allows team members to communicate directly with each other. Confluence is more complex than Asana, but it offers more features. Confluence can be thought of as a type of knowledge management tool, allowing users to store and share information quickly and easily. In addition to task management, you can use Confluence Search to create wikis, blogs, and other types of content—read our guide to improving confluence search with Unleash. You can also add images and videos while collaborating with other users on documents. Learn more more about improving document management here. If you’re on the hunt for intranet search tools, take a look at our post on key intranet search features. How to Set Up an Asana-Confluence Integration Before you begin the integration process, you need to ensure that the following prerequisites are met: You have an Asana accountYou have a Confluence accountAn existing Asana Task or Project is open and current Once these requirements are fulfilled, follow these steps to set up the Asana-Confluence integration: Using the Atlassian homepage, sign in to your Confluence account.Once you land on the Confluence dashboard’s homepage, from the top menu, select the “Apps” dropdown menu and click on “Find new apps”.From the “Find new apps” panel, search “Asana for Confluence” and select it. Using the built-in Confluence App Manager, this will install the Asana for Confluence app.Once this process is completed, you’ll need to start a Confluence Page. To do this, enter the “Edit Mode” and choose between either the “Asana Live Leak” or “Embedded Asana Project” macro.From here, copy the Asana Live Leak link and, in the macro editor, paste it into your Asana Task and then close the dialogue box.Next, it’s time to head over to Asana. Once you're on their website, log into your account and do the required Asana Task.Asana will then ask you to approve the Confluence integration. Do this by clicking “Accept”. Nice work. You’ve now completed the Asana-Confluence integration. Benefits of Integrating Asana With Confluence Asana and Confluence are both great tools for managing projects and tasks, but when used separately, they can only go so far. When integrated, however, the two can work together to create a more seamless electronic management system for users. One of the benefits of integrating Asana with Confluence is that it gives team members a more holistic view of their projects. In Asana, tasks can be assigned to specific team members and tracked by the due date. In Confluence, on the other hand, pages can be created to document project progress, track milestones, and provide detailed instructions on how to complete certain tasks. When these tools are used together, team members have a one-stop-shop for all their project information. Additionally, integrating Asana with Confluence can provide other benefits for your team: Better task management Asana can be used to track tasks and projects, while Confluence can be used to document the work that is being done. This integration can help ensure that everyone has a clear understanding of the tasks that need to be completed and the status of those tasks.Better checklist management Asana can be used to create and manage checklists, which can then be embedded in Confluence pages. This allows team members to easily access checklists when they are working on a project.Better agenda management Asana can be used to manage meeting agendas and minutes. The agendas and minutes can then be embedded in Confluence pages so that everyone on the team has access to them. Aside from Asana and Confluence, another great way to manage documents is through the use of a multi-tool search.
Creating Filters in Jira: Everything You Need to Know

Project management

Creating Filters in Jira: Everything You Need to Know
Jira filters allow users to control the output of Jira Search issues by applying a set of conditions to search results. Users can use filters, for example, to show only the issues that are assigned to a specified assignee, that are in a particular status, or that are tagged with a particular keyword. Read on to learn all you need to know about filters in Jira. When to Use a Filter in Jira A filter in Jira is a way to control the flow of work items in a particular project. Filters can be used to show or hide work items based on specific criteria, such as the type of work item, the status of the work item, or the assignee of the work item. Filters can also be used to create views of the project that show only a subset of the work items in that project. Interested in intranet search? If so, see our intranet use cases or how to improve intranet search here. Additionally, here are our tips on how you can supercharge your intranet search. How to Create a Filter in Jira Jira has numerous search filters that can be used to locate and manage different projects, issues, and boards. As there are far too many to mention, for this tutorial, we’ve plucked out a couple of example filters to demonstrate the process. Here’s how to apply Jira filters: Log into your Jira account and from the dashboard’s menu, navigate to “Filters” > “View all filters”.Once the filters page has loaded, from the top left-hand corner, click the “Create filter” button.Next, from the top of the search page, set the assignee to “Current User”.Now, select “More” > “Resolution” and check “Unresolved”.Using these specific filters, the search results will return unresolved issues that have been assigned to the current user. Of course, you can choose between a vast array of different filters from the search bar. To view them all, simply click on the scroll bar, wait for the list to drop down, and select which filter you feel applies to the search query you wish to execute. Searching through files slowing you down? To save time, learn how to find files faster with better box search. How to Edit a Filter in Jira In Jira, filters allow you to view a specific set of issues that meet certain criteria, some of which you may use regularly. If this is the case, users can save filters for later use. To save a filter, simply: Define and run your search.Click the “Save as” link above the search results.This will display the “Save Filter” panel.Assign a filter name and click “Submit” to save the changes. Once saved, they are stored on a user’s “favorite filters” list. If needed, these can later be edited. To edit a filter: Head to the Issues menu and select "Filters". Click the name of the filter you want to edit.To add or remove criteria, simply click the "+" or "—" buttons next to each field. You can also change the order of the fields by clicking and dragging them up or down. How to Share a Filter in Jira Filters that have been previously created can be shared with other Jira users via groups, projects, or project roles. Additionally, any save filter can be shared globally using the JIRA Administrators' “Shared Filters” feature. To share an existing filter, simply: Choose “Issues” > “Manage filters”.From here, click the “My” tab.Locate the filter you want to share and select it.Click the “Details” link.Click “Edit permissions” to open the “Edit Current Filter” display.Click on the “Add Shares” dropdown menu and select either “Everyone”, “Group”, or “Project”.Once selected, next to the dropdown menu, click the “+Add” button and select who you’d like to share permissions with.To finalize, click “Save”. Another great way to save valuable time and money is to make use of enterprise search. Best Practices for Using Filters in Jira As we’ve covered here, filters are an important part of Jira as they allow users to focus on specific issues and tasks. By using filters effectively, users can improve their productivity and reduce the amount of time they spend managing their work. Check out our post on how a powerful intranet search improves employee productivity. To get the most out of Jira filters, here are some best practices: Use filters to organize your work One of the best ways to use filters is to create a custom filter for each project you're working on. This will help you stay organized and focused on the tasks at hand.Use keywords in your filters When creating a filter, be sure to use keywords that will help you find the issues you need quickly and easily. This will save you time when looking for specific issues.Don’t overuse filters Filters can help you quickly find and track issues, but it's important to use them wisely. Too many filters can lead to information overload and make it difficult to find the issue you're looking for. If you’d like to see more best practices, check out our Jira best practices post here.
The Reasons You Should Integrate IAM With Data Center Security

Knowledge management

The Reasons You Should Integrate IAM With Data Center Security
Identity and access management, or IAM, is a term used to describe the practice of managing users' identities and the permissions that are associated with them. Essentially, IAM systems help organizations ensure that only authorized users have access to the resources they need, while also keeping track of who has accessed which resources and when. IAM systems can also be used to manage passwords and other authentication information. The Purpose of Data Center Security According to a study by Ponemon Institute, the average data breach now costs companies $3.86 million—up 23% from 2013. The healthcare and financial services industries are the most frequently targeted, accounting for 43% and 28% of all data breaches, respectively. That amount of money can potentially bankrupt a company if not properly secured. In addition, data breaches can cause irreparable damage to a company's reputation, which can lead to fleeing customers and long-term financial losses. Putting the financial implications aside for a moment, the sheer opportunity for security breaches further highlights that data center security is critical in protecting the privacy of company information. To put this into perspective, the amount of data created, shared, and stored is growing at an unprecedented rate. The International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that some 64.2 zettabytes of data were created or replicated in 2020. This rapid growth creates new opportunities for criminals to exploit, as well as new challenges for organizations trying to keep their data safe. The frightening part? Data breaches can occur in many ways, but some of the most common is through malware attacks, stolen or compromised credentials, and social engineering schemes. With all this considered, data center security should be a top priority for companies and businesses. No matter the size or scale of their operations. Data integrity is another serious consideration companies should be making. Learn more about the importance of data integrity here. How Does IAM Boost Security? Through the use of IAM, administrators can control access to systems and data, ensuring that only authorized users have access to the information they need. IAM can also help streamline operations by providing a single point of control for user access, making it easier to manage user permissions. How is this achieved? IAM systems use a variety of methods—such as passwords, security tokens, and biometric identification—to verify the identities of users and grant them appropriate levels of access. Through these methods, IAM can help boost security by providing a centralized way to control user access, and by enabling administrators to more easily identify and respond to potential security threats. IAM can also help improve compliance with government and industry regulations governing data privacy and security. During these tough economic times, are you worried about your institutional memory? If so, learn how to preserve your company's institutional memory here. Benefits of IAM Systems IAM systems can provide several benefits, including: Reduced administrative overhead Managing user identities and access privileges can be a time-consuming task, particularly if there are many users. IAM systems can automate many of the tasks associated with managing users, which can help reduce administrative overhead and make your employees' lives easier.Improved compliance posture IAM systems can help organizations meet compliance requirements, such as those set forth by the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). More efficient and secure user authentication IAM systems provide a more efficient and secure way for employees to authenticate themselves when accessing company resources. Reduced help desk costs IAM systems can help reduce help desk costs by automating many common tasks, such as password resets. How to Integrate IAM With Data Center Security The scale and breadth of potential data risks are rather scary. Thankfully, there are several ways to integrate IAM with data center security. One of the most effective approaches is to use a federated identity management system. With federated identity management, users can authenticate against a single identity provider, such as Active Directory or LDAP, and then be granted access to multiple resources, both within and outside of the data center. Businesses can also use role-based access control (RBAC) to manage access to data center resources. RBAC assigns roles to users and groups and then allows those roles to perform certain actions on specific resources. Worried that the flow of information within your company is compromised? If so, be sure to read about information silos and data federation and how you can better streamline the sharing of information within your organization. Before you head off, be sure to learn more about how you can improve both document management and knowledge management within your organization.
Why Your Customer Support Tools Need a Powerful Search Engine

Productivity

Why Your Customer Support Tools Need a Powerful Search Engine
Is your customer support team productive? Most likely not. According to Forrester’s research, 50% of support leaders say their teams are wasting time switching between different tools and channels to solve customer issues. In addition, 51% of support leaders reported that their team has less bandwidth today than ever before. To keep up with the numerous contact channels and customer support tools required to serve customer customers, it has become essential that companies streamline their customer support operations with a robust and intelligent search engine. A powerful search engine integrated into your customer support stack is the key to improving the productivity and efficiency of your customer support teams. Here’s why. Minimizes Customer Service Response Times The ability to search across different apps and repositories from one place significantly reduces the time to respond to customers. Customers are impatient. Research from HubSpot shows that 90% of customers expect a response in under 10 minutes. The longer it takes for customer support agents to retrieve information beneficial to customers, the longer the customer wait time, and long wait times lead to terrible customer service. The 2020 SaaS Trends Report by Blissfully shows that support teams are using over 10 apps to carry out their tasks. Having to dig through all those different customer support tools to find an answer negatively impacts customer service response time, especially when you consider that support agents are usually fielding queries from multiple customers simultaneously. Investing in a multi-tool search can help agents comb through all the resources available and find the answer quickly. Tools like Unleash let you connect 30+ applications so you can search across multiple repositories at the same time. Provides Relevant Answers to Complex Queries Contextual and semantic search creates a search experience that helps customer support teams provide relevant answers to customers’ questions faster. For example, support agents often struggle to see where their customer has been, who they’ve spoken with, and the information they have already provided. On the other hand, customers dislike supplying the same information multiple times, only to be prompted again when speaking to an agent over the phone. Having historical context solves both challenges. Contextual search delivers personalized search results that zoom into the individual’s customer support history helping support agents provide meaningful and relevant answers to complex questions. For example, if a customer raised a complaint the previous week about the late delivery of an item, the support agent can easily access this information using contextual search. Semantic search analyzes groups of words that typically appear together and uses machine learning to predict what support agents mean when they type in queries. For instance, if a support agent types in “expected delivery date,” semantic search can predict the intent of the search and pull up support tickets or chats from different apps based on that search query. It can also provide meaningful search results when support staff make mistakes in their queries. Combining contextual and semantic search in a unified view ensures that support staff get faster and better-quality answers to customers’ issues. Powerful search engines like Unleash can extract relevant search results for your support teams by providing semantic and contextual search. Increases Employee Productivity A powerful search engine consolidated with your customer support tools stack reduces the amount of context switching required when moving between applications, leading to improved productivity for your support teams. Context switching occurs when customer agents frequently shuffle between applications and tasks. Doing this can lead to a decrease in productivity and cognitive fatigue. Research suggests it takes 9.5 minutes to regain our flow when switching between tasks. Imagine the effect it will have on agents who have to switch between over 10 apps to resolve customer complaints multiple times a day. Research by Pega also shows that an employee who multi-tasks between 30 applications will make 28% more errors than an employee who focuses on a single application. More errors mean unhappy customers, and disgruntled customers lead to less customer retention and ultimately a decrease in revenue for the business. Integrating a powerful search engine for a deeper search helps minimize the context switching of moving between apps to locate or deliver information. For example, Unleash can search through 30 applications and provide one-click app launching and support for email creation and ticket logging, all from the search results. Having all these capabilities in a unified search engine reduces the amount of context switching required by support agents. This allows support staff to better focus on their highest priority tasks, avoid mental fatigue, and improve their productivity. Reduces the Number of Escalations Finding relevant and updated answers to customers’ queries means fewer escalations for support teams. Support agents want to provide faster resolution to customer queries. However, for complex problems involving multiple teams, agents are often forced to pass customers between groups when they cannot assist, which means more time spent and more frustrations for the customers. According to Zendesk research, nearly 70% of customers are irritated when their call is transferred between departments. Imagine a customer of a financial institution gets his card declined at a supermarket counter due to a suspected fraud error. The customer contacts the support team and is passed between three different agents before someone in the team can help resolve his issue. This situation is not ideal for all the parties involved. The customer is frustrated and embarrassed, and customer support agents (with limited bandwidth) have to manage the frustrated customer. The company could have prevented this issue if the first agent could quickly search through error codes and previous mentions of a related problem to help the customer resolve the issue. Even in cases where the customer has to be transferred, powerful search capabilities help agents find information to explain to the customers why they are being transferred. It ensures the customer knows their issue is understood and they’re not just being transferred needlessly. By utilizing a powerful search tool equipped with advanced filters, error code location, and predictive search capabilities, agents can quickly find the answers they need without looping someone else in or escalating it to a different department. Improving Your Customer Support Toolset Increases Retention Your customer support representatives are one of your customers’ direct links to your business. By empowering your customer support team with a powerful search engine, you boost their productivity and allow them to focus on providing excellent customer service, which is key to retaining customers. Since 80% of future profits potentially come from 20% of your existing customers, why not delight them? Learn more about how Unleash’s powerful search engine can improve the productivity of your customer support teams by signing up for a free trial today!
How Better Search Improves Sales Productivity In The Team

Productivity

How Better Search Improves Sales Productivity In The Team
Forrester's sales activity studies have consistently shown that "finding content and information is a significant productivity obstacle for sales teams." Sales reps have built their lives around the excitement and the energy of the office environment. In a viral blink of an eye, the world took a hiatus, everyone went remote, and sales leaders and teams had to develop new ways to be productive outside of their natural working environment. By transitioning from a world of paper files to a world of digital tools, each carrying out a different function in their everyday task, sales reps struggled to fully find all the information they needed to understand and close a prospect. Before sending that first email to launch a sales cycle, sales reps would have had to switch between a plethora of tools first. However, you can get rid of this barrier and compress your sales cycle with fast searching across your company. You can improve your sales team's productivity by making it easier for them to access all the content on these tools to cut down the process of diving deep into a lot of apps to find information. Eliminate Content Silos With a Unified Access Point One of the blockers hindering the sales team's productivity is the inability to easily access important information and content that their marketing counterparts create. 81% of sales leaders mentioned "content search and utilization" as the top area for improving productivity. Only 46% of sales reps believe that they have enough data and insight on a prospect's intent. Data silos frustrate employees by creating multiple bottlenecks. Sales reps often struggle with putting in their very best because they don't know the information available to them and how to find it in the company's shared database. It's even worse when another department, like product or marketing, creates and stores the content. Adopting an enterprise search tool makes it easy for sales reps to access data and other forms of content. It serves as a single, searchable home for all your content assets. It's not enough to organize content by factors such as sales stage, industry, persona, or segment. Having a single point of access to all prospect and customer data can heavily contribute to the productivity of your sales team. With one click, they should be able to access all the information they need on accounts, leads, product updates, etc. When it becomes easier for sales reps to find relevant content and data to use in their everyday activities, they can stop spending time on repetitive tasks, like constantly scrolling through the company's database. Instead, they can spend that time focusing on creating pitches, drafting follow-up messages, and building winning sales strategies. Get a 360-View of Prospects and Clients According to HubSpot's Sales Enablement Report, prospects' buying habits have changed in a post-pandemic world, and sales reps now have to close deals virtually instead of in person. Transitioning to a remote operation model came with incorporating even more tools to understand the prospect and their behaviors. In fact, 72% of salespeople say they need to have at least three screens with multiple tabs open to get that 360-view of their prospects and leads. With businesses already using many apps to document prospect information and behavior, sales reps have to know the exact location of every piece of information if they want to get to it quickly. Before picking up the phone to make that sales call, they need to conduct an appropriate amount of research, and searching for this information can take more time than expected. With a better search tool, they can quickly type in one keyword, e.g., the prospect's name, and get all the necessary information. For example, a B2B sales rep can type in the name of the company they're trying to close and get a full view of them and how they've interacted with the brand. Quickly Find Answers to Urgent Questions Marketing, customer success, product, and sales teams work cross-functionally to convert prospects to retained customers. In most cases, the prospect doesn't interact with the sales team until much later in the buying funnel, after having multiple interactions with the brand. When a sales rep is on the phone with a prospect, it is important that they have all the information relating to that prospect in front of them to make the call go smoothly. The rep can get questions that only the product team can answer on a sales call, but the prospect wants an immediate answer. If the sales rep can't immediately do a quick search and get answers to a prospect's questions, it reduces the confidence in the product, and the company can lose that lead. With efficient and effective contextual search, sales reps can instantly find answers to urgent questions. Contextual search helps sales reps search for data without having to remember the exact title of a document to locate it. For example, a sales rep wrote a prospecting email template in one of their monthly reports. With contextual search, they don't have to remember the exact report; they can easily search for some words in the template to find it. Unleash Your Sales Productivity One productivity problem facing sales teams stands out above the rest: fast, easy access to all the resources and data they need. Thankfully, this is a situation you can solve with a better company-wide search tool! With a one-click intranet search tool like Unleash, your sales team can change how they approach the information they need. Instead of navigating many tools and apps to find different bits of information, they can easily download one tool and search their entire tech stack at once. Unleash provides a Google-like search solution that enables everyone in the organization to find every piece of information in one spot. It connects with more than 30 apps and quickly brings you the data and content you need. Learn more about how Unleash can significantly improve your sales team's productivity problems.
Why Your Engineering Team Needs a Multi-Platform Search Engine for Their Code Repository Tools

Knowledge management

Why Your Engineering Team Needs a Multi-Platform Search Engine for Their Code Repository Tools
Many experts have talked about how the inability to access information can hamper software engineers’ productivity. In his talk, “The hero’s journey: how we are solving internal technical documentation at Spotify,” Gary Niemen, a product manager at Spotify, mentioned that not being able to find necessary information was among the top three productivity blockers for Spotify engineers. Quality delivery with speed is the key to staying relevant and competitive in the software industry. As such, you should not allow anything to hamper your developers’ productivity, especially if you can do something about it. With a multi-tool search platform like Unleash, you never have to worry about your engineers wasting valuable time looking for anything. They’d be able to find everything they need — across multiple code repository tools and platforms — from files to emails, meetings, issues, and tickets, in seconds. The Average Engineer Wastes up to Three Hours of Their Day Searching for Information According to a survey conducted by Zapier on how employees spend their time, 73% of workers spend 1–3 hours of their day “just trying to find information or a particular document.” In total, that’s about 5–15 valuable hours a week wasted looking for information. Easier access to information can make a whole lot of difference. Studies have found that developers are “almost 60% more likely to feel equipped to do their job when they can easily find what they need.” They also get an 11% bump in productivity simply by having a team repository that is easy to search. A typical developer’s day is spent searching for information across different platforms and code repository tools to enable them to do their jobs. They spend time searching project management tools like Jira to find details about projects or tasks assigned to them. They’ll also need to search through Slack to remind themselves about the discussion details on certain matters. And, when they run into problems with a particular API or need to debug, their first line of action is to search through FAQs, documentation, or code repository tools to find clues or instances of how another developer may have used the same API. Without an efficient search mechanism, all this information may take significant time to find. Using a multi-platform tool, you can give your engineers a central place to search across all code repository tools and platforms used within your organization. With impressive features like advanced filters and semantic, contextual, and deep search, your engineers will be able to find whatever information they need in one spot in seconds. You’d get to save every engineer on your team considerable time and help them become more productive and better contribute to the company’s bottom line. Switching Between Multiple Platforms and Code Repository Tools Causes Developers to Lose Focus and Concentration Searching through multiple apps and code repository tools doesn’t only drain engineers’ productivity because of time wasted; it also breaks their natural flow and concentration, which may eventually decrease the quality of code they write. The “context switching” that occurs when we jump from one digital app to another causes a lull in productivity and can even produce fatigue. Research suggests it takes 9.5 minutes to regain our flow when we make that switch. Research also indicates that a person who is multi-tasking between 30 applications will make 28% more errors than someone working with less. Pavel Avgustinov, VP of Software Engineering at GitHub, explained the problem with context switching from a developer’s perspective: “As a developer, staying in a flow state is hard. Whenever you look up how to use a library, have a test fail because your developer environment has diverged from CI, or need to know how an error message can arise, you are interrupted. The longer it takes to resolve the interruption, the more context you lose.” However, this wouldn’t be the case with multi-platform search engine tools. Using such tools, your developers can access all information, platforms, and code repository tools from one interface and reduce the effects of context switching. Unleash integrates with several apps used by developers, so it can function as a central workspace for them. That way, they can: Search and locate files across multiple repositoriesGet a quick overview of their weekly schedule and instantly launch their meeting with the Calendar viewSearch across their servers and major cloud providers to allow them to instantly monitor or access VMs, databases, storage, and instancesSee all pending PR and understand the changes that have been madeCreate an issue, task, document, and so much more, all from one place Also, suppose a platform or tool that your engineering team uses is not supported. In that case, they can build custom integrations with our exposed SDKs (software development kits) to connect them. Unleash can streamline your workflows and increase productivity no matter what apps you use. And, no matter how you work, Unleash can accommodate your workflows. Engineers Can’t Reuse Code if They Can’t Find the Code The mantra “do not reinvent the wheel” encourages developers to reuse code and not to duplicate a method or solution that already exists unless they absolutely have to. Code reuse — recycling or repurposing code parts to improve existing or create new software—cuts down on development time, avoids code bloat, and lowers development risks. Using a component that is already known and approved means there’s less risk involved in writing something entirely from scratch. Developers will always run into difficulties, and if your company builds multiple products using multiple code repository tools across different teams, chances are another developer on another team may have used the same API or solved a similar problem. However, because manually looking through various repositories or bug reports can be tedious, a developer will find it difficult to locate helpful code to reuse or study. Using multi-platform search tools, your engineers can avoid tabbing between GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket, or other code repository tools and find all relevant info—documentation, design specs, and everything else — in one place. Empower Your Developers to Save Time and Focus On Their Jobs Your engineers spend so much time fruitlessly searching for information and files, which will eventually drain them and keep them from doing their best work. With a multi-platform search tool like Unleash, all of that will be in the past. Effective code search tools can help developers substantially improve their software development efficiency and effectiveness. The good news is adding Unleash to your workflow doesn’t require a large team of developers or a free weekend to take servers down. You can get up and running in minutes without changing your existing infrastructure. Not so sure about it? You can try Unleash for free and then decide whether you want to make a commitment or not.

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