IDC found that the typical knowledge worker spends around 30% of their time searching for information. And beyond that, they’re wasting time on locating documents, approval requests, versioning, and sharing content. The whole process tends to be so confusing that many employees find that it’s easier to create their own documents rather than try to find existing information elsewhere in the enterprise—but that means they’re wasting time creating duplicate content.
It’s a widespread systemic problem, but it’s an even bigger deal when a key expert leaves your organization, either temporarily or permanently. Employees who’d tap your lead developer or subject-matter expert for their insights are left spinning their wheels with no reliable source of information to help them move their projects forward.
In either case, this disorganization or lack of clarity can cause your organization to make the same mistakes again and again, never learning from others in the company who’ve already addressed how to solve a particular problem. It can also hamper your research and product development efforts—a real risk that can hurt your company’s growth and innovation.
Companies see real-world consequences when information isn’t shared effectively: In a survey by Planview, 54 percent of respondents say that poor collaboration results in missed deadlines, 35 percent saw quality issues, and 26 percent saw cost overruns.
So how can you stop the silos and encourage company-wide sharing of knowledge?
Create a universal knowledge-sharing hub where all employees are encouraged to ask questions and respond to each other with their own insights. While you likely have chat tools and project management tools where employees share details around their specific projects, a knowledge-sharing platform can greatly broaden access to important information, enabling different teams to build on each other’s work and innovate more quickly.
With a seamless process for cross-department collaboration, you can dramatically reduce the time spent searching for knowledge, and start building on it with new initiatives.