- Digital Marketing
Is SharePoint Good For Knowledge Base?
Every organization needs knowledge, as it is an essential part of its growth and functioning. The knowledge of an organization can be as simple as knowing who the vendors are to more complicated information, such as trade secrets or detailed information about services offered by an organization. If stored incorrectly, all of this knowledge can be vulnerable.
As a special way to build a company's knowledge base, some companies use SharePoint, as there are many good reasons to use Sharepoint's knowledge base. SharePoint can be used to manage a variety of applications. For example, many companies use SharePoint to provide an integrated intranet solution that includes personnel directories, customer relationship management tools, and other resources that employees can view and use. SharePoint Knowledge Base is an intranet resource that is often featured.
SharePoint implementation partners don't prioritize a "Knowledge Base" in most cases. Document management is SharePoint's primary use. Many businesses use SharePoint and its document libraries to store, upload and collaborate on documents. SharePoint's reputation for document management platforms is enhanced with the inclusion of key features like controlled metadata and workflows.
Microsoft SharePoint is used to store documents and can also be used for many other purposes. You can use it to manage your organization’s knowledge base. SharePoint can be used for online collaboration, but it is best understood and managed to create a knowledge base.
Moreover, it is not easy to choose knowledge base software, from so many options in the market. It can at times be hard to decide which one is best for your organization. You must ensure that the knowledge base solution to which you commit is not only tailored to your company's needs but also your customers'. It must be - Fully functional, easy to use and navigate, and Cost-effective.
You must also ensure that the knowledge base software you choose actually adds value to your customers and enhances their experience working with your brand.
Imagine that you are searching for the answer to a question in your everyday life. You might be trying to find the right software. A knowledge base can be created within the company. A question from an employee about how to use proprietary software or how to perform a vital task, or the specific rules and processes of their organization, could be answered. Your employees will soon be able to perform their normal duties and processes. However, they might still need advice or assistance for non-routine tasks.
You can teach your staff two basic steps to deal with this situation. Encourage them to ask questions. There's a good chance that an employee will be able to ask a colleague or manager if they are unsure. This method can reduce productivity as employees are not able to answer the same questions repeatedly. Although they have the knowledge required, sharing that expertise on a regular basis puts pressure on their limited working hours.
Once you understand the Modern page structure and how it allows you to create natively mobile responsive pages you can be creative. You can use sections and columns to organize your content in a well-thought-out structure that looks great on any device. Mobile-first is a new age where knowledge should not be limited to a desktop window. Modern page editing allows, enforces, and encourages this through what they do with the web parts available.
Change Tracking, Approvals, and Version History
SharePoint is not new to version history. There are several features that resemble Microsoft 365 making it more efficient than the average, managing content approvals, tracking modifications, and capturing version history.
Power Automate, the Microsoft 365 workflow engine, allows you to add predefined Page Approvals automation to your Modern Pages library. It is easy to configure approvals for the major release of your KB Articles. You can create your own approval automation to handle complex approvals that have multiple layers. Approvers can review and approve the email with comments right from their inboxes.
The default site pages library supports both major and minor versions. This combined with the ability to show only the major pages to your end-users gives authors the freedom to work on drafts until they are perfect. Although this feature is not new, its impact and value are often overlooked.
SharePoint Online gleams when Microsoft has begun rolling out Page Difference Visualization (Modern Pages). This allows users to see the changes made on pages. It's like Track Changes in Word but on a cooler note. It allows you to see which text was changed, added or removed in rich text editors. This is vital information for users who need to know the messaging changes. Modern pages are more than text. You can see what web parts have been added, removed, or modified to their properties. These web part changes can often be just as important as the textual changes to a page's history.
Your knowledge base will likely be used by many people in your company. You might have front-line employees who interact with customers, such as a customer service representative or call center agent. Others may be back-office staff like the accounting department. So that they don't get overwhelmed by irrelevant articles, you might want to target people based on their roles.
SharePoint Online was previously available on-premise. However, audiences were difficult to manage and create. SharePoint Online has much better support for audiences. You can enable them by simply turning on the Site Pages toggle and one in your News or Highlighted Content web parts. Microsoft 365 groups, security groups, and other groups can be used to identify your target users and then associate them with pages that are important to them.
SharePoint can support true security if you have a well-designed information architecture. This can make it easy for article authors to not have to think about security. They just need to place their articles correctly and SharePoint will take care of security trimming.
A knowledge base should also allow end-users feedback on the content they use for their jobs. This feature was first introduced in SharePoint 2010 with the ability to comment on pages. Recent enhancements have increased this functionality. Not only can users comment on pages and ask questions, but @mentions can also be used to target people with comments. To ensure that everyone is interested in the content, email notifications are sent to page authors and to anyone who was mentioned. You can have a Microsoft Form, or Power App if you are concerned about the visibility of comments on pages. This allows for a more secure, customized, and controlled solution to feedback within your knowledge base.
Modern pages include a social bar, which allows end-users "like" or "favorite", as well as show the number of views. It is important that you know which content is getting the most attention in any content management system, particularly a KB. These interactions, along with the underlying usage reports, help you understand engagement.
It has been amazing to see the enthusiasm that Microsoft has put into the recent Microsoft Search. It's not just useful for knowledge bases. There are many interesting features that can be used by users of a KB. As a search administrator, you can create acronyms and define definitions, promote specific content, answer questions, and many other features.
Site columns and managed metadata make it easy to access all the terminology and taxonomy you need for articles, documents, or any other content. This allows you to add structured information to unstructured content. Search will crawl both your unstructured and structured content. This ensures that you can find all articles and documents in one place. Your metadata can be used to give users different ways to interact.
Your staff may already be familiar with SharePoint or the other features of Microsoft Office. It's possible to keep your knowledge base within the same systems that your staff uses, which can reduce onboarding time. Administrators of knowledge bases don't require new accounts or more passwords.
SharePoint is integrated with Microsoft Office so you can use a single system to manage more of your tools. It will be easier for employees to remember which platform to use and IT will not have to approve new suppliers.
Microsoft is a trusted software enterprise supplier worldwide, so you don’t need to worry about data protection, hacking or going bankrupt. This is a brand that will not be going away anytime soon.
We are proud of you for investing the time, money, and effort in building a Knowledge Base. We recommend that you consider a professional SharePoint consultant.
The SharePoint experts at DESSS will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the knowledge base for your company.