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KCS Aligned v5 Instructions

What is the KCSsm  Aligned v5 Program?

The KCS Academy offers a KCS Aligned designation for vendors who provide tools (software/systems) or services (consulting and training) that complement and/or enable KCS best practices in the workplace. The KCS Aligned designation is a sister to the comprehensive, more stringent KCS Verified designation that is designed for larger product suites such as Customer Management, Knowledge Management, or Enterprise Content Management Systems.

  • Where the KCS Verified designation focuses on a complete set of functional capabilities required to enable KCS, the KCS Aligned designation focuses on enabling the efficient application of one or two specific KCS Practice areas or elements that support KCS adoption and success.
  • Where the KCS Verified designation requires the applicant to demonstrate their tool’s enablement of a broad scope of Practices and Techniques (Reuse, Improve, Content Health, etc), the KCS Aligned designation requires the product or service to demonstrate clear and robust support, or enablement, of a maximum of two Practice areas or a key element of the KCS adoption best practices.

What is KCSsm (Knowledge-Centered Support)?

Knowledge-Centered Support is a proven, vendor-neutral methodology that was developed and put to the test by the members of the not-for-profit Consortium for Service Innovation. The membership is made up of a collection of leading customer support organizations. The goal of KCS is to capture and structure an interaction and reuse the knowledge gained. The result is improved operational efficiency, employee moral, and customer satisfaction. KCS is not just about the technology but the principles and practices that have to surround the tools in order to be successful. Consortium members continue to hone the KCS processes. Meanwhile, they and many other support organizations are adopting these proven practices.

Benefits of KCS Aligned v5 for the Vendor

If achieved, the KCS Aligned v5 designation will let potential clients know that your tool or service contributes to the implementation, adoption, and long term success of KCS v5 best practices. Further, the applicant will receive license to use the KCS service mark and be able to use the KCS Aligned v5 designation in marketing and promotional materials related to the specific tool. Applicants will be provided a brief endorsement from the Academy for use on the tool or service’s marketing materials and/or web site. The name, endorsement, and link to the company/product web site will be included on the KCS Aligned web page on the KCS Academy's web site.

 

Eligible Types of Products and Services for KCS Aligned

There are a wide range of products and services that support KCS adoption and success and are therefore candidates for the KCS Aligned designation. 

 

Examples of tools include but are not limited to:

  • Tools that support elements of the Solve Loop: search, capture, structure, improve, reuse
  • Functionality that supports AQI (Article Quality Index) or KBII (Knowledge Base Integration Indicators)
  • Reporting and dashboard functionality
  • Technology that supports the Evolve Loop capabilities: pattern recognition and data mining

 

Examples of KCS services include but are not limited to:

  • Assessment
  • Design session
  • Change management or program management
  • Tools evaluation and selection
  • Tool customization, configuration, and implementation
  • Self-service assessment and design
  • Training (if it is not offered as a Consortium workshop by KCS Certified Trainers)

Steps to Get KCS Aligned v5 for Tools and Services

For both tools and services:

  • Review the KCS Aligned v5 Instructions (this document)
  • Obtain KCS Practices v5 Certification from the KCS Academy (see instructions here). The representative from the candidate company who will be conducting the demo tool's capability or will be providing the definition of services must hold a KCS Practices v5 Certification.
  • Complete application and submit payment in the Credential Management System. The application must contain the candidate company name, product name and version number of the tool or the name of the service, the name, title, and contact information of the representative who will be conducting the demo, and proof of their KCS Practices v5 certification.


Please see the appropriate section for the remaining steps, below:

KCS Aligned for Tools:  
  1. Complete Self-Assessment Worksheets and submit through Credential Management System
    1. The Self-Assessment is designed to provide some structure for the description of the tool being submitted for Alignment.  Please exclude fields that are not relevant.
    2. Please include any additional or emerging capabilities that are not on the worksheet.
  2. Schedule online demo of functionality through Credential Management System
    1. Demos are done online via a web session.  Please schedule at least three weeks prior to desired demo date.
    2. The demo of the criteria must be completed within 30 minutes.
  3. Conduct demo
    1. KCS Academy staff will confirm KCS Alignment.  The demo should be targeted at the relevant functionality that supports KCS as described in the self-assessment worksheets, not a generic sales presentation.
  4. Sign and submit the KCS Aligned License Agreement and fee through the Credential Management System
    1. If the KCS Academy confirms the product meets the criteria, the license agreement is signed by both parties.
    2. The KCS Academy reserves the right to exercise judgment in determining if the product adequately enables or supports the KCS methodology in a way that warrants designation as KCS Aligned.  If Alignment is not granted, feedback will be provided. The vendor may choose to make product changes based on this feedback and demonstrate it within one year of initial payment without an additional application fee. 
    3. The KCS Aligned v5 License Agreement is entered into by the vendor who seeks to have their product(s) carry the designation of “KCS Aligned v5.” It outlines the conditions of participation, use of the logos, disclaimers, and conditions of the KCS Aligned v5 program.
  5. Market KCS Aligned v5 product
    1. The vendor will submit their logo to be posted on the KCS Aligned v5 products and services page.
    2. The vendor may issue a press release and is able to use the KCSsm Aligned v5 designation subject to the Style Guide.  The KCS Academy can provide a quote for the press release.  The KCS Academy must approve the press release.
    3. Products remain on the KCS Aligned v5 products web page for 12 months from the date of initial posting. After that time they must be renewed to remain on the list.
  6. Complete Annual Renewal and payment form through Credential Management System
    1. KCS v5 Alignment will be issued and renewed for products by major-number release.  Annual renewal confirms that the latest iteration continues to support KCS functionality.
    2. Any material change that would nullify the functional requirements requires a complete re-Alignment.
KCS Aligned for Services:
  1. Submit materials that demonstrate how the service aligns with the KCS Principles and Practices:
    1. For services, this should be a generic statement of work and relevant deliverables
    2. For workshops, this should include the learning objectives, agenda, and presentation materials
  2. Sign and submit the KCS Aligned License Agreement and fee through the Credential Management System
    1. If the KCS Academy confirms the service meets the criteria the license agreement is signed by both parties.
    2. The KCS Academy reserves the right to exercise judgment in determining if the service adequately enables or supports the KCS methodology in a way that warrants designation as KCS Aligned.  If Alignment is not granted, feedback will be provided. The vendor may choose to make changes to the services based on this feedback and submit the updated documentation within one year of initial payment without an additional application fee. 
    3. The KCS Aligned v5 License Agreement is entered into by the vendor who seeks to have their service(s) carry the designation of “KCS Aligned v5.” It outlines the conditions of participation, use of the logos, disclaimers and conditions of the KCS Aligned v5 program.
  3. Market KCS Aligned v5 service
    1. The vendor will submit their logo to be posted on the KCS Aligned v5 products and services page.
    2. Vendor may issue a press release and is able to use the KCS Aligned v5sm designation subject to the Style Guide. The KCS Academy can provide a quote for the press release.  The KCS Academy must approve the press release.
    3. Services remain on the KCS Aligned v5 services web page for 12 months from the date of initial posting. After that time they must be renewed to remain on the list.
  4. Complete Annual Renewal and payment form through Credential Management System
    1. KCS v5 Alignment will be issued and renewed for services by name.  Annual renewal confirms that the latest iteration continues to support KCS success
    2. Any material change to the service that would nullify its ability to support KCS success requires a complete re-Alignment.

KCS Aligned v5 Pricing

 

KCS Aligned v5 Application Fee

$1,200* per tool or program

  • Non-refundable
  • Valid for 1 year from application payment date
  • Processing Self-Assessment
  • Technology Demonstration

KCS Aligned v5 Designation Fee

$1,200* per tool or program

  • Payable when Aligned designation is awarded
  • Posting logo on KCS Aligned products page
  • Annual Update/Renewal for 1 year

KCS Practices v5 Certification

$450*

  • Certification test based on the KCS Foundations Workshop, KCS Practices Guide, and KCS Adoption Guide

Annual Renewal

$500*

  • Complete Renewal Application and payment form in Credential Management System

* plus any applicable taxes

Additional Resources

See www.thekcsacademy.net/get-aligned for additional resources including the Self-Assessment Worksheets.

KCS Community Rules of Conduct


Do No Harm: Be responsible and don't misrepresent yourself, claim false credentials or expertise, or give advice in a way that might cause someone harm. Don't incite or advocate harmful, derogatory or illegal practices.

Most of what the Consortium for Service Innovation and the KCS Academy Inc. creates is offered with a "right to use with attribution" agreement. Two exceptions to the right to use with attribution are the licensed materials for the KCS workshops and the contents of the Certification Exams. "Do No Harm" includes do no harm with respect to the integrity of the licensed materials and the value of the Certification Exams. You agree not to copy, distribute or discuss the questions and/or answers on any of the Academy's Certification Exams or in any way diminish the value and integrity of the Certification programs.

Sunshine Rule: Don't do anything that you would be embarrassed about having covered in an article on the front page of the Wall Street Journal. And, if in doubt, don't.

Communications: This is your network. Most people have a common-sense feel for what is and what is not appropriate in the network and generally the network polices itself.  The following boundaries of acceptability or ground rules are offered for reference should the need arise.

Offensive Messages: Messages personally attacking, calling names, or otherwise harassing or being disparaging to another member, or any ethnic or religious group will be deleted. Offensive and/or vulgar language is not appropriate.

Adult Content/Illegal Activity: Messages containing sexually oriented or suggestive dialog, content, or links to such will be deleted. Messages with links to or suggesting illegal activity will also be deleted. Either could result in loss of access to the network.

Religious and Political Topics: These topics generally just cause bad feelings and do not align with the intent of the KCS network.

Other: The Academy will make an effort to remove ANY objectionable content in a reasonable time. We reserve the right to remove any content without providing a reason.


Vendor Specific Rules: There are vendors and consultants who have products and services that may help people resolve issues or increase their success with KCS. These vendors and consultants are welcomed and encouraged to participate in the discussions. Product features or service offerings may be discussed in response to an inquiry, however, to avoid the intrusion of overt sales messages in network interactions vendors are asked to:

  • Restrict postings to responses to customer inquiries which may be directly resolved by your product, and please indicate specifically how your product or service may resolve the issue.
  • Exploiting (spamming) the members of the network for personal or company gain will not be tolerated.
  • Clearly specify your vendor affiliation (with more than just an email address please).
  • Do not discuss pricing or purchase requirements. Instead, engage outside the KCS network via -mail, phone, or your web site.

Most vendors currently participating add value, but failure to adhere to any of these rules will result in content being deleted and possible loss of access to the KCS network. (Not to mention the bad image inappropriate behavior will create for your company.)

Lack of adherence to these rules of conduct will be grounds for loss of certification status and exclusion from the KCS network at the KCS Academy's discretion.

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Last modified
12:09, 2 Feb 2016

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