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How To Make A Call Center Knowledge Base Reps Actually Use


Having a knowledge base is pretty much a non-negotiable for an organization as large, fast-moving, and complex as a call center. Even the best-trained agents need to be able to reference back to things like company policies and processes every once in a while. And for new agents who are just getting started, a comprehensive knowledge base is going to be their best friend during the first few months on the job.

But even the deepest and most organized call center knowledge base is useless if no one’s accessing it. It’s not enough to just have a knowledge base. You need to create an agent-friendly system that your reps will actually want to use.

Common Reasons Reps Ignore a Call Center Knowledge Base

  • Lack of Awareness: Your employees may not even know that the knowledge base exists unless you’ve specifically told them about it. There’s also a chance that they know it exists but aren’t aware of how it can help them.
  • Content is Unhelpful: If the content in your knowledge base is too surface-level or irrelevant, no one’s going to bother using it.
  • Content is Outdated: Similarly, if your knowledge base is full of articles telling your employees how things used to be done, they won’t use it.
  • Content Doesn’t Match Day-to-Day Reality: Nothing will turn employees off a knowledge base faster than finding a bunch of answers that don’t match their daily reality.
  • Employees Prefer to Ask Coworkers: Your employees may have formed a habit of asking coworkers for answers instead.
  • Bad Organization: If your knowledge base is badly organized or hard to use, employees will go elsewhere for information.

How To Create a Call Center Knowledge Base Reps Will Use

The most important thing to understand about a call center knowledge base is that it’s a living document. This means that you can’t create a knowledge base and then forget about it. You have to continually update it with information that reflects the latest company policies as well as the realities of your reps’ day-to-day work.

Here’s how to create a useful knowledge base.

Understand Call Center Reps’ Needs

If you want your knowledge base to be useful, you need to make sure it addresses your reps’ most common needs and questions. You might think you’re creating a knowledge base with all of the most relevant information included, but you’ll never really know unless you actually talk to your agents.

The first step is to ask your reps what they wish they could have in a knowledge base. What kind of information do they constantly find themselves referencing, and what data do they often search for? 

You can do this through informal conversations, but the best method is to gather feedback from your reps via a survey. This way, they’ll be able to take their time to really think about what kind of information they’d find most valuable and helpful to perform their jobs.

Don’t do this just one time, though. Make this an ongoing process after you create the knowledge base, implementing regular surveys and having regular conversations with your reps. 

Remember, your knowledge base is a living document and needs to be updated regularly.

Design an Intuitive Knowledge Base

There are a ton of different ways to create a knowledge base, and the right one for your organization is going to depend on your agents’ needs.

The simplest type of knowledge base to create is simply a shared document, but this has its limitations in terms of searchability and organization. Soon enough, you can easily find yourself with a very long and disorganized document that nobody actually uses.

A better choice would be to use a company wiki, which is like a private website that contains information about your company. These have much more of an inherent organizational structure, and they’re easier to search than a simple document. The limits here are that they may not have much reporting functionality built in.

That brings us to full-blown knowledge base software. This is software that’s dedicated to holding institutional knowledge and making it as easy as possible for employees to access. Most knowledge base software comes with robust reporting capabilities, allowing you to see who’s accessing the knowledge base and what pages they spend the most time in.

When you’re designing your knowledge base, make sure you make it as user-friendly as possible for your reps. Having an intuitive interface is key—you don’t want your reps to feel like they’re battling the software every time they need to find something.

You also need to make sure whatever you choose has a high-quality search feature so your reps can quickly find information while they have a customer on the line.

Create Useful Content

If you don’t include relevant content in your knowledge base, why would your reps bother reading any of it? 

The best knowledge bases are filled with information that’s relevant, current, and easy to understand. It also needs to be comprehensive, meaning it includes everything from HR policies to how to log customer interactions. There might be pages dedicated to a discussion of your company’s mission and culture. There should also be step-by-step tutorials on how to use your VoIP phone system and other often-used tools.

Next, pay attention to your employees. What kinds of questions are they constantly asking each other? What, if any, compliance issues are coming up? What kind of data would be really helpful for them to access on calls? 

Ask your employees these questions and look back over your records to see what kinds of issues managers are often being called in on. This will help you create a knowledge base that actually serves your team.

Onboarding and Ongoing Training

Finally, make sure you’re using your knowledge base for onboarding and training. There’s no point in creating it and then letting it sit there. The knowledge base should be incorporated into every element of your reps’ work from the day they start with you. The sooner they get comfortable with it, the more likely they are to use it in their day-to-day work.

It’s also important to use the knowledge base for ongoing training and update it continually. When designed well, your knowledge base should function almost like another team member, acting as a hub of institutional knowledge that everyone can access.

Moving Forward: Monitoring Knowledge Base Usage

Once you’ve got your knowledge base up and going, you’ll need to make sure that you monitor its usage. This is a lot easier to do if you decide to go with a purpose-built knowledge base software that gives you stats on usage as well as popular search queries. 

As far as what to track, you’ll want to see how often your reps are using the knowledge base and what kinds of information they’re regularly searching for.

Tracking these metrics allows you to not only monitor for compliance but also to make good use of the data you’re gathering. By seeing what kinds of things your reps search for, you can get a good sense of where your training might be a little lax, or you may find common issues that come up in your processes. If multiple people are searching for the same thing, you know you’ve got an opportunity to do some training or possible revamping.

Besides tracking your metrics inside the knowledge base, you should also institute regular surveys to get feedback. Let your reps tell you what kinds of improvements they think should be made to the knowledge base, and then apply this feedback to the next iteration of your system. Look for ways you can continually improve your knowledge base, which will in turn positively impact your call center as a whole.




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