5 Key Pillars to Pairing ITSM & Knowledge-Centered Service

Knowledge-Centered Service (KCS®) can and should be a part of your IT Service Management (ITSM) processes as a complementary strategy to self-service. However, launching a KCS initiative can seem like an overwhelming endeavor. Here are five things to focus on to help you get your KCS initiative off the ground.

Knowledge Base and ITSM Tool Integration

To fully adopt KCS, your teams must be able to easily and quickly use the knowledge base. Ideally, your knowledge base will be integrated with your ITSM tool so your organization can follow KCS best practices alongside their service management processes.

Start Small

Pilot with a small group. You should look to start in an area where KCS will make the most impact. For example, starting in your Service Desk with a handful of Service Desk Analysts is a great start to getting off the ground quickly. Those in the customer service roles will immediately understand the benefit of KCS as they will quickly reap the rewards. Also, starting with a small, motivated group allows you to work out the kinks in things like your Style Guide and Life Cycle process. If you start with a larger group, it will cause chaos when trying to iron out the process wrinkles and can cause mass discouragement.

Don’t Try to Boil the Ocean

Start with a small team – but also start slowly. Don’t dump in all your existing knowledge and try to retrofit it into your new knowledge base. Start following KCS practices with your small pilot team and truly create knowledge on an on-demand basis. During this time, you should be designing and redesigning your style guide, article templates, life cycle process, identifying good Knowledge Coaches, celebrating wins, and dissecting losses. A knowledge base is a living entity that will always be changing and adapting. Don’t ever think, “We are finally done creating our knowledge base.”

Get Trained

There are a lot of free and paid resources out there to guide your organization to learning KCS. Invest in training and certifying your core KCS management team on KCS v.6. Your champions need to feel empowered and confident that they fully understand the process and can guide the rest of the organization.

Stay Motivated

The work of building your Knowledge Base is never “over.” You should always be looking at ways to improve, better capture knowledge, increase customer usage, and finding metrics to monitor your articles. Stay motivated by reaching out to peer institutions and sharing wins as well as losses. Get involved with your knowledge creators and discover what drives them to contribute. Celebrate your organizational success by promoting winning key metrics. Keep up to date with the Consortium for Service Innovation as they update KCS best practices.

By keeping these five pillars in mind, you will put your organization on a path to having a successful KCS program that will help resolve issues faster, optimize resources, and promote self-service as the primary method for customers when they begin looking for help.

For more on KCS and knowledge base best practices, here are a few recommended resources:


KCS® is a service mark of the Consortium for Service Innovation™.