Skip to main content
Consortium for Service Innovation

Quick Reference: Exit Criteria for Phases

Quick Reference: Exit Criteria for Phases

Note: These seemingly exact numbers are offered as an example of the scope and dynamics of the KCS impact. Actual results will vary based on the characteristics of the company culture, products, and customers.

Phase 1: Design and Planning

Phase 1 Exit Criteria


Readiness Evidence

Organizational commitment

  • Clear vision and goals
  • Budget approval
  • Executive sponsor buy-in
  • Management team buy-in
  • Budget approval
  • Program manager and KCS Council resources identified, allocated, and committed.
  • Communication sent from executive about plans and goals

Strategic framework complete

Defined expectations for customer, employee, and organization

Separate customer, employee, and organization views with related benefits and anticipated results

Content standard available

Consistent article content

  • Content standard is understandable and easily accessible
  • One-page quick reference guide for article quality has been created 
  • Process in place to update content standard

Content Standard Checklist defined

High quality articles

  • Checklist can be captured in an easy to use tool and accessible to all coaches
  • Mechanism to provide visibility to the knowledge workers about feedback from the Content Standard Checklist process

Processes defined and tested

Enable the Solve Loop

Process to integrate use of the KB into the issue resolution process has been documented and tested with current tools

Process Adherence Review defined

Process compliance

  • Link rate and link accuracy assessment process defined, and measures captured and available to coaches
  • Mechanisms to provide visibility to the knowledge workers about PAR scores and feedback from the PAR process
Licensing model defined Rights and privileges aligned to competency  License level rights and privileges defined with clear criteria to award license and conditions and terms for removing a license 
Coaching model defined Consistent interpretation of content standard and workflow Coaches identified and trained

Performance Assessment Model defined

Learning and development

Draft metrics developed and defined (largely derived from Content Standard Checklist and PAR)

Baseline metrics established

Measure of progress

All indicators in the measurement framework have a baseline measure that reflects the current state

Communication plan in place

  • Benefits defined for each stakeholder
  • Commitment to project
  • Written communication plan with project owner
  • Review and signoff of plan by Executive Sponsor
  • Process for testing communications effectiveness
  • Process for feedback and improvement

Technology functional specifications drafted

Minimize technology investment for Wave I (practice KCS before major investment in tools)

  • Technology assessment complete
  • Technology supports the basic workflow

Adoption Road Map complete

  • Time and cost commitment known
  • Supports project management
  • KCS Council engaged
  • Wave I members identified
  • Training scheduled for Wave I
Training program for Wave I users Engage Wave I participants Training materials and scenarios developed and tested

Phase 2: Adopting

Phase 2 Activities


Readiness Evidence

Key Performance Metrics are consistently reviewed to assess behaviors. 

Demonstrates commitment to the program

  • First contact resolution increased compared to baseline
  • Time to proficiency decreased compared to baseline
  • Increase in capacity (usually 20-30%)
  • Cost per incident decreased from baseline

KCS Training and Coaching 

Understanding and buy-in: knowledge workers have adopted the KCS workflow and understand the content standard

80-90% of knowledge workers are trained and licensed (KCS Contributors or KCS Publishers)

Knowledge base is being used for 65%-85% of requests

Reduced rework, leveraging the collective experience of the organization through reuse of knowledge, and minimal duplicate articles being created

Link accuracy is 90% or greater. Link rates are 65%-85% (this range represents the fact that using the knowledge base has become a habit, and it is enough use to sustain the methodology)

Articles are being reused or modified as needed, and created if they don't exist

Most of what the organization knows has been captured in the knowledge base

Reuse rate of existing articles is greater than the creation rate of new articles

Functional and integration improvements identified in Wave I have been implemented

Optimal process drives how the work gets done. Make it easy for the knowledge worker to do the right thing.

Technology supports the workflow (through modifications to existing tools or acquisition of new tools)

Articles adhere to the content standard

Articles in the KB are sufficient to help (findable and usable)

Content Standard Checklist average for the team is equal to or exceeds the Checklist target

Knowledge workers are doing the Solve Loop activities Knowledge articles are being reused, improved, and if it doesn't exist, captured in the workflow PAR average for the team is equal to or exceeds the PAR target

Knowledge base has shown value internally

Assures customers will find helpful articles in self-service (Phase 3)

Reuse of existing articles is equal to or greater than the creation rate


Phase 3: Leveraging

Phase 3 Activities


Readiness Evidence

Articles available for self-service

Customers have faster visibility to article

  • % of knowledge base available to self-service
  • 90/0 rule—90% of requestor-actionable knowledge is available to requestors within 0 minutes of becoming known.

Selfservice use

Customer success with self-service

Frequency with which customers use self-service before opening an incident is increasing

Self-service success Customer's ability to solve issues without opening a case Positive trend in customers' ability to find useful information

The source of pervasive issues are being identified

Organizational improvements

Increase in the number of organizational improvements identified (product function, service, process, policy)

Incident volume decreased

  • Cost savings
  • Opportunities to create additional value for customers

Number of requests/ incidents declines (this needs to be normalized to install base or revenue in order to account for the dynamics of the organization)

Customer satisfaction and loyalty increased

Increase customer success

Increase from the baseline

Employee satisfaction and loyalty increased

Increase profit

Increase from the baseline

Work has become more meaningful

Motivation factor for employees

Employee satisfaction increased from baseline

Assess self-service (New vs Known study)  Improve self-service experience (success rate) Improvement in new vs known ratio


Phase 4: Maximizing

Focus areas and trends for Phase 4

Phase 4 Activities


Readiness Evidence

Customer loyalty Improve brand image and customer retention NPS
Lower customer effort 
  • Resolve issues
  • Optimize usage
  • Adopt features
Survey, CES

Work shifted from known to new

New opportunities and challenges for employees

New vs known—the work in the organization shifts from mostly known to mostly new, . Knowledge workers spend the majority of their time resolving new issues. This will vary based on product lifecycle or process/policy changes.

Time to adopt new/enhanced products

Customer success measured

Decrease from the baseline

Support cost as a percentage of revenue has decreased

Lower cost

Support costs have dropped by 2550%, and the volume of customer issues resolved is up at least 100% (web success combined with incidents closed)

Identification of pervasive issues   Increase speed 


  • Was this article helpful?