Building a knowledge base is not as easy as one may think if he has never done it before. There are a lot of requirements. We don't even know until we come to that. Experience count a lot. On top of that, building a knowledge base that practically fit into business needs is even more difficult. Content structure, display and layout formats, classification and search are some of the major concerns.
One of the difficulty is codification of knowledge. A lot of it is actually tactic knowledge, especially in the beginning. It takes time to uncover them and transition into explicit knowledge. The BayGO approach in BYOS practice fits very well into this gap. With appropriate people and time, this can be achieved. This is actually a matter of knowledge management.
BYOS is the preferred tool and platform for knowledge management, because it is basically how most people think and work.
Structure of content varies. Structure of content is like taxonomy, but internal to the same piece of knowledge content. When users find the right piece of information, we normally try not necessary to branch to another piece of content back and forth which cause a lot of distractions. Better fitting of the formats and layouts will result in much better user experience.
Following are some considerations for the design of a knowledge base:
- The structure necessary for each type of content, yet there normally are different content types. The repository system should provide flexibility for structure design and modifications. Following are some of the nice elements as example:
- Horizontal and vertical tabs
- Multi-dimensional taxonomy to facilitate good classification and facet search.
- A search facility supporting different configurations and tagging
- In a corporate environment, the system also requires to provide view statistics and search history analysis for management and fine-tuning of knowledge base.
Collection of knowledge is an on-going effort, therefore it is also an on-going project. Care had been taken to choose the right template which provides the nice and useful structure, formats and layouts. Choosing the template was what spending most of the time at start. Development of content structure and associated taxonomy terms are a matter of on-going efforts.