eGain Knowledge Stories – Knowledge and Training Times


I’m often asked about the impact of knowledge management on training times for new staff because that’s one of the key benefits that we present. The most extreme example that I’ve ever seen of that was a financial services organization, a building society that I worked with many years ago to help them build a guided help knowledge base. At the time we started the project, their training time was approximately 14 weeks for a new member of staff to come in before they were able to answer queries effectively unaided, because of the complexity of the processes and the number of historical legacy products that they were supporting. When we built the knowledge base, their management decided to try and experiment. They get quite a lot of temporary staff in at peak times and so with some of those staff, with their consent, they trained them on how to use the knowledge base on day one, and on day two they put them onto the phones answering live customer queries. By the end of week one those agents were actually able to work as effectively as the members of staff who had been there for more than three months. So the whole approach was a huge success. But in reality, it scared the agents so much to be put in that stressful situation, when they went forward they didn’t kind of put quite so much pressure on them. And having proved that they could do it they can then take a softly-softly approach and get them up to speed in something like two weeks. But even so that was an absolutely enormous saving in time and to get to full productivity.

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