Knowledge Management Software

Knowledge Management Software

In the age of big data and cloud storage, efficiently discovering, accessing, organizing, and utilizing knowledge is critical to stay competitive and profitable. Organizations should adhere to a systematic approach to understand where and in what forms knowledge exists and how it is stored, shared, and refined? Businesses also need to find avenues to create new knowledge and apply it effectively for innovation. Knowledge management software is a supporting mechanism for facilitating organizational learning, initiatives, and innovations. 

What is a Knowledge Management Software?

The knowledge management system has tools for data mining, intelligence gathering, finding patterns and relationships, and knowledge capturing. It can collect, organize and store knowledge from various sources, including alliance partners, customers, suppliers, employees, product reviews, interviews, etc. It also has features for smart search, brainstorming, communication, collaboration, document management, graphic illustrations, etc.  

Why Do Organizations Need a Knowledge Management System?

Organizations require a knowledge management system for:

  1. Identifying all knowledge resources ( Existing and the Hidden Ones)
  2. Organizing, assessing, categorizing, mapping, and evaluating the knowledge
  3. Saving the knowledge that it creates every day
  4. Storing knowledge in an easily accessible form and knowing exactly where it is stored
  5. Developing competencies based on the knowledge by transferring it to the right people
  6. Processing knowledge for valuable insights
  7. Eliminating the obsolete knowledge
  8. Protecting knowledge from theft, misuse, or being lost

How to Select the Best Knowledge Management Software for Your Organization?

Investing in knowledge supporting structures, knowledge base systems, knowledge retention mechanisms, and integrated knowledge management tools has a lot of strategic benefits for organizations of all sizes and types. However, considering the complexity of the subject itself and the array of tools in the market, one can have a tough time zeroing in on the right one for ones' purpose. GoodFirms, the industry-leading B2B software research platform, presents the list of curated knowledge management software solutions for futuristic organizations. Check the features, reviews, apply filters and see the pricing of the top knowledge management software tools and finalize the best one for your organization.

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Buyer’s Guide

Introduction To Buyer’s Guide For Knowledge Management Software

Knowledge Management is an integrated approach adopted by organizations to store and share enterprise data in a way that helps to improve its performance, internal communication, and customer support. Besides that, Knowledge Management is crucial for decision-makers aiming for organizational performance. It helps them to address a few challenges that include;

  • Responding to a competitor's move
  • Retaining customers
  • Planning for new offerings
  • Enhancing productivity
  • Managing business processes efficiently
  • Improving customer satisfaction

Above all, a systematic approach to knowledge management facilitates decision-making capacity at every level, builds routine learning, and creates space for innovation. 

By delivering relevant information through structured data,a knowledge management system can provide the basis for making good decisions.

This buyer guide is intended to help business owners to get a complete overview of Knowledge Management Software. The guide is packed with key aspects and tips to make an informed decision on the best Knowledge Management Software.

What Are The Major Elements Of Knowledge Management?

Knowledge Management has four major components. It is imperative that these four components are well regarded when setting up a KM program.

1) People: It involves senior leaders and stakeholders who possess the domain knowledge and strategy for KM implementation. Most organizations build up a knowledge management core team as they gear up with KM efforts. They identify KM champions and facilitators across the business and establish an executive committee to monitor knowledge management activities. It involves many people as the organization has to engage people at different levels and from different business areas. 

2) Practice: It defines the process that the KM team can use to create, capture, store, organize, and distribute information. The knowledge management team identifies the underlying bottlenecks and tries to resolve them. They also determine how knowledge flows through organizations. 

3) Content and Technology: Content is an essential part of the Knowledge Management System, and it contains pieces of facts and data that people convert into valuable insights and apply as knowledge.  But without technology, sharing knowledge is not possible. So technology weighs as equal as content in the knowledge management system.

4) Policy:  A well-planned strategy is essential to define how KM will solve the business challenges; factors like tools, approach, and budget.

What Is Knowledge Management Software?

Knowledge Management Tools helps in identifying, gathering, storing, evaluating, and sharing all of the valuable data that organizations generate in day-to-day operations.   It is a multifaceted strategy for making the best use of organizational knowledge assets.  The knowledge management solutions ensure that the information is available in the right place at the right time to improve the efficiency of an organization. It deals with how a company should and could make the best use of its existing knowledge.  The knowledge management software ranges from personal knowledge management software to highly specialized enterprise software.

What Is The Use Of Knowledge Management Software?

There are two forms of knowledge- explicit and implicit.  Explicit knowledge is found in records, books, knowledge repositories, consumer contacts, technical requirements, patents, etc. In contrast, implicit knowledge includes individual perception, experience, thought process, etc.  For organizational growth, both types of knowledge are necessary.  However, the data produced by businesses are so diverse and dispersed across various channels that it is difficult for an organization to manually collect those unstructured data and synchronize them to make it meaningful. In such a scenario, Knowledge Management Software could be very productive.  

Basically, businesses can make use of a Knowledge management system to enhance collaboration, improve customer satisfaction, and efficiently align processes.     

When it comes to keeping your customers happy, then a knowledge management tool can be of great use as it enables the team to deal with the customers with the right information, at the right level, and with the right approach. Eventually, your customers are happy.

What Are The Types Of Knowledge Management System?

  • Enterprise knowledge management solution: Enterprise-wide knowledge management systems use a wide range of technologies for storing unstructured and structured documents, searching for information, locating employee expertise, disseminating knowledge, and using data from enterprise applications and other key corporate systems.
  • Knowledge worker systems: Knowledge work system enables the creation and storage of the activities or knowledge of highly skilled professionals. These knowledge are often gathered from internal communication devices, portals, tools which contribute towards better management of enterprise knowledge.  
  • Smart techniques: Often, technologies like deep learning, machine learning, and big data techniques are used to convert raw data into useful information.

Several organizations use the Knowledge Management System in a diverse way; some of the common strategies include FAQ content, forum or community feature, how-to articles and tutorials, training programs, webinars, etc.

How Can Knowledge Management Software Boost Your Business?

  • Centralized Knowledge Management System:  Knowledge Management Software provides centralized access to all the information or data, which makes it easy for an administrator to deliver the right information to the right person just in time.
  • Builds brand goodwill: With better customer service, top knowledge management software enhances the company’s brand value.   
  • Minimizes miscommunication: Organizations that incorporate the right knowledge management system tools facilitate effective communication over company policies, job functions, business processes, etc. Overall, software knowledge management reduces the risks of costly mistakes that occur due to miscommunication.
  • Reduce boarding and training time: A well managed centralized knowledge management system containing all the necessary data has a big advantage in hiring and training employees.  It makes the knowledge transfer process easy whenever a skilled or experienced professional is leaving the organization. 

What Are The Scopes Of The Knowledge Management System For Small Businesses?

Though small businesses deal with a low amount of data, they can still reap benefits from Knowledge Management Solutions as much as the larger enterprises.

  • Better customer relationship:  For any business size, customer relationship is at the core of their business propaganda. Knowledge Management solutions enhance a better relationship with customers by facilitating better communication and exchanging relevant information.
  • Meeting organization’s growing needs: Later or sooner, the small businesses tend to expand their business operations; in such circumstances, a Knowledge Management Tool could be an advantage to acquire, combine, apply, and create knowledge. Adopting top knowledge management software early makes it easier to scale the company.
  • Enhance decision power: Generally, in smaller firms, the owner-managers are in the central position, and decision making is limited to only one person. But as business proliferates, the business responsibilities are shared, and decision-makers may grow in numbers. In such a situation, it is essential that small firms have valuable data on hand right through the beginning for making an informed decision.   
  • Establish community:  The small businesses require peer inputs and suggestions for the organization’s growth. With the Knowledge Management System tools, small businesses can build community and bring many knowledge holders in the same place.

What Is The Difference Between Knowledge Management Software Vs. Information Management Software?

Information Management and Knowledge Management differ in scope and purpose, but both are essential for modern organizations. The information management process is used to classify and categorize the data, whereas knowledge management is used to make data discoverable and retrievable while ensuring security and regulatory compliance.

  • Information Management Software: The information management software is primarily concerned with people managing information sources, that is, auditing them, acquiring and storing them for easy retrieval and dissemination of information. The information management software is used by the organization to access a huge amount of data and to plan the business strategy.
  • Knowledge Management Software:  Knowledge management is a processed form of information management and goes beyond extracting facts from collected data. It focuses on the application of information. Knowledge Management involves people in capturing, creating, sharing, and using knowledge in an organization. The best knowledge base platform streamlines the sharing of data internally as well as externally.

What Are The Benefits Of Knowledge Management Software?

  • Reduce wait time:  The knowledge management solution reduces the wait time for customers with robust customer support. The customers can reach the knowledge base and search for the answer by themselves.
  • Convert conversation into knowledge-base:  A detailed email about the company’s product or operations can be converted into a knowledge base article.  The best knowledge base platform with advanced features can generate an article draft automatically from email.
  • Keep information up to date:  A knowledge management tool helps to optimize the content with new information.  With a rating system in place, the customers can notify website owners about the article that needs to get revised or replaced.
  • Easy knowledge transfer: A skilled professional can bring a lot of value to the organization, but when they leave the organization, they create a knowledge gap, which can be filled by establishing an internal knowledge management system.  The knowledge management system tools can facilitate knowledge transfer and present all the information in an easy to understand format.
  • Robust reporting on documentation:  A full reporting on documentation can help to measure the number of people visiting the website content.  The best knowledge base software allows website owners to identify the area for improvement and set their priorities.
  • Better consumer experience:  The knowledge management platform supports a range of media files like text, videos, or images.  It gives website visitors the freedom to choose their preferred way to learn or discover the offerings from the company.  
  • Manage permission and access control: A knowledge management system allows users to update user roles and permission all from one place. 

Key Features Of Knowledge Management Software

Before finalizing on the tool, match the features that a knowledge management software can offer with your business or website requirements. 

  • Powerful search functionality
  • Font editing
  • Multi-lingual
  • Integration with other tools
  • Hyperlinks and links titles
  • Manage team members
  • Permission-based user access
  • Assign roles and designations
  • Fully customizable
  • Advanced analytics and reporting functionality
  • Analyze and enhance customer support team performance
  • Supports cloud for the management of multiple documents
  • Mobile friendly
  • Classifying information based on Taxonomy
  • Scalability

Latest Trends In Knowledge Management Software

  • Incorporating social media elements: By including social media elements with top knowledge management software, the businesses can widen the scope of knowledge sharing and brand awareness.
  • Mobile devices: Just as social media, mobile devices have been playing a significant role in unifying the people across the globe and allowing access to the knowledge bank on-demand. The best knowledge base software developers are now focusing more on integrating mobile features into the Knowledge Management Solution.
  • Rise of pragmatic AI: Pragmatic AI has powered chatbots to analyze and answer user’s queries.  Currently, AI handles low complexity tasks and basic customer support, but programmers are hopeful of getting better results through “Pragmatic AI.”
  • Collaboration tools: To derive better insights from data and establish a concrete communication channel, collaboration tools can play a significant role. With the continuous flow of new information into an organization, it is challenging to capture everything; this is where collaboration tools can be useful. The collaboration tool can help to refine the performance of the best knowledge base platform.
  • Building a culture of continuous learning:  Along with high-end technology, businesses are also focusing on harnessing a culture of continuous learning through the transition of knowledge base software.
  • Attractive visuals: In the past, the traditional knowledge management system was filled with elaborate file names, dense body text, and long lists. The modern trend in Knowledge Management is more focused on simple layouts and relevant images.
  • AI-powered search: With traditional KMS, it isn't easy to fetch particular information inside the images, documents, and audio files. But with intelligent AI-powered search, it would be possible to search content even from the most challenging files.  It may even allow users to search the content through various filters like dates, document types, and sources.

Factors To Consider Before Buying Knowledge Management Software

  • Cost: A price tag is often a point of concern for businesses implementing software in their infrastructure.  While selecting a knowledge management solution, make sure to evaluate the price plan against the listed features.
  • Ability to add new content:  The best knowledge base software should handle large amounts of data and add new content whenever needed.      
  • Feedback and Q&A section: A right knowledge management system should engage customers or visitors through Q&A session or Feedback section.    
  • Data security and compliance:  Verify if the KM software vendor has enabled all the necessary safety measures and compliances.
  • AI Support: AI has improved the knowledge management platform’s efficiency in handling customer support.  It can interpret spoken commands, direct the questions to the right person, or even answer the customer’s common queries.
  • Data consistency: The knowledge management platform should clearly define the method of data entry and duplication rules to maintain consistent data throughout the organization.
  • SEO-friendly: It is surprising, but many customers find companies through help center content. If the help center content is optimised for the search engine, then it becomes easy for customers to discover your business. Some knowledge management systems come with in-built SEO features like keyword tagging, title formatting, and metadata editing. 
  • Omnichannel compatibility: The best knowledge management software allows distributing the content across all the channels preferred by customers. It helps to increase the customer base by exposing the knowledge base to maximum numbers.  
  • Customized Workflow: The idea behind knowledge management is to share knowledge across various departments for effective collaboration and decision making. The knowledge management software should allow users to segment the large volume of data into meaningful content that is easy to share and adds value to the organization.
  • Third-party software integration: A third party software tool can enhance the knowledge management tool capabilities; KMS must support third-party software integration.
  • Cloud support: If the organization does not have an IT team to handle all updates, backup, and maintenance, then it is better to switch to a cloud-based knowledge management tool.

What Is The Average Cost Of Knowledge Management Software?

The price for Knowledge Management Tools are very flexible, and it could start as low as $1/month and rise upto $800/month or more.  The knowledge management software pricing may vary based on the number of users, features, and storage space.    

  • Knowledge Management Software Ideal for Start-ups or Small businesses: The knowledge management tools like AllAnswered comes with a basic price of $1/month and offer 14 days free trial, while Slab, with a starting price of $6.67, offers the basic version free forever. Both these tools are favorite among the users due to its exclusive features and attractive prices. Also, we suggest free and open source knowledge management software for companies who wish to try the software for free before actually investing.
  • Knowledge Management Software Ideal for Mid-Sized Business  Medium range tools like Obie with a price range of $59/month is packed with all necessary features, while Stonly, with a starting price of $49/month, offers a 14 days free trial to try its exclusive features. The tool integrates with some of the leading helpdesk tools and automatically updates the knowledge base wherever it is deployed. In case if the users have a tailored need, they can even request a customized tool.  The medium-range tools are ideal for users who want to go light on their budget; besides Stonly and Obie the user can even consider tools like kipwise, UseResponse, Malcolm that more or less fall in the same price range.
  • Knowledge Management Software for Large Enterprises The Knowledge Management Software for large enterprises covers a full range of features on a single platform. Tools like clinked.com with a starting price of $83/month offer features like uploading files by email, single sign-on integration, data migration, customization, etc. The price may exceed upto $836 as users add more features to the list.  The other tools that fit in the same category and offer out-of-the-box features include KnowledgeOwl with a starting price of $79/month and One Window Workplace (pricing on demand).

The Knowledge Management System can be applied on a broad spectrum, and because of this attribute, it has instilled curiosity among software developers to further enhance its capabilities with Free and Open Source Knowledge Management software.

Why Refer To GoodFirms' List Of Knowledge Management Software?

GoodFirms is a leading review and rating platform for IT solutions, and it has been helping companies to acquire the best software products and streamline their business processes. The platform has a wide range of software products that can cater to various sectors. The list of best Knowledge management software created by GoodFirms are done with utmost care and research. The filters and compare options, along with the review of each software, can help users to make the right choice.

With the best knowledge management software in place, the organization can clearly define its knowledge management goals and expected results. Do not miss to check the GoodFirms list of the Best knowledge Management Software to make your organization competitive in this knowledge-driven economy.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is Knowledge Management?

    Gathering and managing knowledge in an organization is not a single-man job. It requires collaboration and teamwork for sharing knowledge with all stakeholders, application of the knowledge, and innovating based on the application. Organizations require the application of knowledge from various sources to create world-class products and services. This is a complex process and therefore requires a systematic approach to create, store, share, and process knowledge. Knowledge management is the process of managing knowledge assets, organizing knowledge resources, and deriving value from its tactical use.

  • What is the Best Knowledge Management Software?

    The best knowledge management software provides organizations with all tools to manage their knowledge base, spark engagement, grow intelligence, reuse knowledge, and redistribute it for attaining organizational objectives. It is easy to implement, use and navigate. The best knowledge management system software boosts knowledge creation and transfer by recording all practices, guidance, observations, and mechanisms known to the organization. GoodFirms has listed the best knowledge management systems such as UserResponse, ProProfs Knowledge Base, BloomFire, Tettra, ZenDesk Guide, PHPKB, Astute Knowledge, and more.

  • What are the Three Most Critical Dimensions that Can Affect the Implementation of Knowledge Management System?

    Implementation of a knowledge management system can be affected by the following dimensions: 

    1. Corporate Strategy: Organizational vision and mission has to be aligned with the type of knowledge organizations want to create, store and share to meet the strategic and tactical requirements. 
    2. Culture: Flexible and conductive organizational culture can be a catalyst for knowledge creation, whereas rigid cultures can deter knowledge creation by resisting changes and not allowing people to interact in a free manner.  
    3. Technology: Technology has the power to collate, categorize and contextualize unstructured data into structured pieces of information. Knowledge management tools further use this information for valuable insights and store it in the knowledge zone of organizations. Without properly designed applications and tools, implementing and sustaining the knowledge management system is not possible.
  • What Types of Knowledge can be Processed by Knowledge Management Software?

    A knowledge base management software can process the Explicit, Tacit, and Embedded knowledge.

    1. Explicit Knowledge: KMS can identify, store, retrieve explicit knowledge found in databases, memos, books, directories, repositories, documents, etc. 
    2. Tacit Knowledge: Rooted in intuition, experience, practice, and perception, tacit or implicit knowledge is the best source of innovation, transformation, and progress. KMS can process the tacit knowledge for competitive advantage. 
    3. Embedded Knowledge: Knowledge management systems can unlock the potential of the hidden or locked knowledge in processes, manuals, rules, routines, code of conduct, etc. This knowledge can be used for reverse engineering of products, processes, and mechanisms.
  • Why is Knowledge Management Critical for Innovation?

    The rate of obsolescence in few industries such as information technology is not for the faint of heart.  Products, processes, and technology getting obsolete is the risk that today’s organizations face more than their predecessors. Any product can get obsolete, outdated, and end up in a scrap in no time. In such business scenarios, continuous innovation, rapid product developments, and a neophiliac approach are required for staying competitive and profitable. Knowledge management assists companies in creating, sharing, applying, and updating their current knowledge systematically for successful innovation.

  • What are the Employee Productivity Tool Sets included in Knowledge Management Systems?

    The knowledge management tools have a specific framework that enables employees to increase productivity. One such module is the Enterprise Search Option. It allows employees to search all repositories from a single dashboard. Another one is the Enterprise Content Management Option, which allows employees to capture and structure information easily, categorizing it and labeling it using metadata. Also, a wide variety of collaboration and teamwork tools unleashes more productivity.

  • What Integrations Should One Look For With Knowledge Management Software?

    Knowledge management software can integrate with helpdesk software, document management software, CRM, content management systems, employee training modules, Slack, Chrome, Analytics, Live Chat Software, and more.

Resources for Knowledge Management Software