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Consortium for Service Innovation

KCS is a Journey, Not a Destination

KCS is a journey, not a destination. While the work of maintaining a KCS implementation is never done, we hope that the KCS v6 Practices Guide will provide some direction. This guide is a compilation of the proven practices of KCS from the problem solving and individual daily workflows, to content quality management, to insights for team leadership and performance assessment. We break out the eight practices of the KCS methodology into two reinforcing loops:

  • Solve Loop
    • Capture
    • Structure
    • Reuse
    • Improve
  • Evolve Loop
    • Process Integration
    • Content Health
    • Performance Assessment
    • Leadership & Communication

The concept of double loop processes, as opposed to linear processes, is taken from research in the complex adaptive systems area. We will describe more about the double loop concept in the next section.

After an overview of the double loop process, we provide a description of each practice area. We discuss techniques, concepts, and vocabulary and in many cases cover implementation variations and lessons learned. We emphasize the practical experience captured through years of work with support teams around the world.  The experience across the membership also reflects a variety of support environments:

  • Internal as well as customer facing support organizations
  • Low volume, high complexity as well as high volume, low complexity
  • Software, hardware, and network environments
  • Enterprise, small to medium business and consumer customers

We should note that KCS applies to any information or knowledge intensive business, not just technical support.  A number of members are adopting KCS across their entire company. They are implementing the KCS Practices in HR, marketing, sales, product management and development organizations.  

The benefits realized in the short term can be assessed using traditional support metrics. The longer-term benefits are in new areas of value creation and, therefore, require new measures.

To fully address the organizational benefits, measures, and phases of adoption, the Consortium has written the KCS v6 Adoption and Transformation Guide.  The phases of adoption are briefly introduced here and further defined in the Adoption Guide.  Phases of adoption are referenced from time to time in the Practices Guide where the practice or technique differs based on the organization's adoption phase. (Note: names of these phases were updated in October 2022.)



Plan and Design

Build tools required for successful adoption

Gather baseline measurements

Set realistic internal and external expectations

Adopt in Waves

Create internal understanding and excitement through initial competency

Establish internal referenceability

Build Proficiency

Create and mature the knowledge base

Increase process efficiency

Reduce knowledge worker time to proficiency

Improve collaboration and knowledge worker satisfaction

Optimize and Innovate

Optimize resource utilization

Reduce support cost

Increase customer success

Improve employee satisfaction

Improve products and services

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