Instant internal knowledge: expert search in your employee app

Treat expertise the way you treat files - keep it organized, indexed and accessible. 

Did you ever need an answer to an urgent problem that required an expert, and you’d bet that your company employed such a person – but you had no fast way of finding out? Internal company knowledge should be instantly accessible. Too often problems that could've been solved quickly with the right personnel are left to fester until the relevant internal knowledge can be found and processed. Just as you emphasize easy-but-secure file access, you need to treat expertise the same way.

The right combination of features in an employee app can solve this problem for you. With the essential data collected, you can deliver a true ‘Expert Search’ within your employee app.
 

Building a complete employee expert database

Having complete profile data for the whole staff is the first step in creating an expert database.

Making knowledge accessible starts with gathering and categorizing it properly. Just as tagging, naming conventions, or folders help you find a file, so too must you organize and I.D. your expertise. Sitrion ONE's user profile feature can help execute this.

You can load profile information en masse into your employee app from a preexisting database. While you may not have data about specific skills on hand, you do have your employees categorized by department, geography, and job title. This is a good start! Since you're leveraging ONE's smart architecture, the data is stored on a secured cloud, not on the mobile devices of your employees.

If you don't have complete profile information in a central database, you'll need to incentivize staff to complete their profile themselves. This is easily done via the 'my profile' microapp, but you need to make the ease and value apparent to all users.

You can employ any of several known adoption methods here, like gamification, contests, or explaining the mutual value of being recognized for your expertise and being able to find help when you need it. Like any behavioral adoption strategy, this should be tailored to what works for your culture.

Utilize both the ‘expertise’ and ‘skills’ categories of your app profile and provide examples and guidance on what kind of data to fill in here. For example: you can tell your employees to enter their more tangible technical proficiencies in ‘expertise,’ like knowledge on how to operate a certain system. For ‘skills,’ you can use broader terms, like ‘project management,’ ‘technical sales,’ or the ever-important ‘party planning.’ It doesn't matter what the definitions are for each category as long as they are intuititve and consistent.

The right mix of guidance and incentives will get you complete data. With preloaded demographic information, the process of updating one’s skills and expertise takes three clicks and about 20 seconds.

Make the data useful – activate employee app chat

Mobile profile search can find someone with a certain skill or expertise fast - 

Let’s say you’re able to get complete expert data in the employee app. Users can now ID experts and contact them via whatever info they’ve uploaded to the profile (phone number etc). But for the purposes of fast answers to solvable questions, why leave the app at all? With chat enabled for your employee app, you could start the conversation right then and there and get the answer on your mobile. ONE chat can ping an expert instantly with a push notification on their mobile device.

In addition to reducing time-to-answer for every question your staff may have, this also gets additional exposure to your corporate communications content. Accessing experts and chatting with them within the employee app gets another impression on the content stream from both the expert and the expert-seeker.

Instant Expert Search is a great tool, but it’s also one more reason for your staff to go into your unified employee app and see your corporate communications. This is the added bonus of a one-stop-shop for mobile tasks and content. While initially compiling the profile data may take time, the dividends are worth it.

 

James Casagrande

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