If we’ve learnt anything from working in and around contact centres, it is how much pride customer service consultants take in their work space. Visit any customer service contact centre and you will invariably find an array of accoutrements adorning each desk – sunny vacation snaps with loved ones, trinkets collected from holidays past, and of course, every consultant’s best friend – the company cheat sheet, printed and proudly pinned up, ready for when the consultant needs the extension to the finance department, or the contact person for trade enquiries. All is well and good… until a system update changes the extension to finance and the consultant is caught unaware.
Now, imagine if there was a magical universe where that cheat sheet could update itself every time a piece of information on it changed. In fact, think bigger, and imagine if there was a way for every single cheat sheet in the entire call centre to update itself without anyone having to go through the arduous process of throwing out the outdated version and reprinting a new one. This is what ‘Single Source of Truth’ aims to achieve, and what livepro delivers.
In knowledge management, “Single Source of Truth” (SSoT) refers to a fully trusted source of information relied upon by an organisation, where all information is accessed at one location on one platform which acts as the singular authority on all the processes, procedures and operational information that anyone within the organisation would need. In a company that has adopted this method of knowledge management, amended or new information would be instantly pushed out to the entire network so that all members of the organisation have access to the updated data immediately after it’s been changed.
When embracing SSoT, organisations are discouraged from printing and storing information offsite. Once information is taken offline, it is no longer controlled knowledge. This means that management are no longer able to ensure that the content it up to date and there is no way to regulate where it is stored or who is accessing it. Importantly, access to the valuable audit trail is easily lost when staff rely on uncontrolled data and this may cause other issues for the organisation down the line.
Under a well thought out SSoT platform, only authorised users would have the permissions to approve and publish new knowledge into the system. That way, staff can confidently rely on their SSoT platform at all times, and bad business decisions informed by outdated data are eliminated. With a cloud based SSoT, access to the system is not geographically limited and staff are able to pull information from any location with an internet browser. With livepro in particular, organisations can even push content directly from livepro onto their customer facing website, allowing customers to access correct and consistent information, 24 hours a day.
But wait, you say – won’t dumping the whole company’s information into one spot create a huge cluttered mess just like our company SharePoint, Intranet or shared drive? Well… no, it’s actually quite the opposite. The challenges of having multiple departments storing all their information in the same place can be overcome by selecting a platform like livepro, which features a robust categorisation, governance and permissions system. By using these features effectively, we can:
- Silo information based on teams or groups to prevent information overload
- Enforce strict governance rules to ensure only certain members are able to create, edit and publish content to users
- Establish a robust audit trail with the ability to view previous versions and any changes made
In our age of instant data transmission and globalisation, the amount of information organisations need to manage across teams, time zones and business units is growing exponentially. With the speed and frequency that information is required at, sticking to a data management system that keeps data siloed in conventional storage systems such as shared drives and intranets makes it extremely difficult ensure that all staff within an organisation are accessing information that is factually correct, up to date and authored by the most suitable person. Luckily, Single Source of Truth presents itself as a solution in the ongoing struggle that businesses face to disseminate information with speed, integrity and accuracy.
Corinne Chan | livepro Customer Knowledge Specialist