Knowledge Base Migration

Optimation used expertise and experience to support a lead government agency in a large scale project, to migrate their knowledge base content to a new intranet platform.

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The ministry involved embarked on an organisation-wide initiative to design a new intranet, which included the migration of the entirety of their knowledge base content under the “Knowledge Base Migration Project”. After previously being engaged in the first phase of this project, the ministry asked the consultancy team to return, and provide advice across the whole Knowledge Base Migration Project; to produce standardised procedures, to ensure greater user buy-in, and to create an ongoing culture of sustained Knowledge Base use by creating a single home for content.

Customer Challenges and Opportunities

As experts in information and knowledge management, we were asked to provide specialist advice across the whole project, from planning to go live. This included:

  •  creating standardised processes and templates for intranet page creation,
  • checking the quality of the newly created pages for compliance with the style guide principles,
  • facilitating workshops, engaging with SMEs, and gathering requirements,
  • designing and creating an information architecture for the new content,
  • interlinking pages and creating sidebars for ease of navigation,
  • creating clickable navigation maps for individual business units to ease the transition,
  • introducing the project team to Agile ways of working, including facilitating stand-ups and retrospectives, and
  • providing general advice across the project, such as comms and change management.

The largest challenge for the ministry was information architecture. They had 21 knowledge bases of varying sizes and complexity; information was siloed, the content was undiscoverable, pages were duplicated both within and across the knowledge bases, and as such, content was inaccurate and out of date.

How we helped

We brought together Optimation’s strengths in information and knowledge management, together with a human-centric design thinking approach. Over the course of seven months, we were able to design and build an effective information architecture that incorporated all 21 knowledge bases.

We began by mapping the current state of each of the knowledge bases, to understand how each business unit worked. We then applied information architecture principles to map each of their procedures and see where they would fit under the wider structure. Then we engaged with SMEs and frontline staff, by running workshops to test our assumptions, and to let frontline staff see exactly where and how their role fits into the larger ministry wide process. We then finalised the structure for each knowledge base, and pages that had been created were mapped to this final structure.

The Outcome

This piece of work was well-received across the ministry; having one overarching information architecture for each business unit’s knowledge base content enables staff to easily navigate to their information, and in turn provide better information and services to the public, while also mitigating duplication, silos, and inaccurate and out of date content.

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