Getting Started with Knowledge Base

This getting started article will help administrators and managers who have never set up a knowledge base to get oriented with the basics in TDAdmin and TDClient. To setup a knowledge base application a user must have permission to create new applications in TDAdmin and a user must at minimum have the permission for Add Articles on their security role and have TDNext access in order to add articles to their knowledge base.

Overview

A knowledge base is a centralized repository where information is stored, organized, and shared. When used externally, a knowledge base is where customers can go to learn any and everything they would ever need to know about an organization’s products, services, or processes. An internal knowledge base is typically created so employees can share, collaborate, and distribute all organizational knowledge and information within the organization.

There is a robust permissions system that restricts access to sensitive articles. This can be configured in the Permissions tab when editing a knowledge base article or category. The first Inherit Permissions checkbox allows articles to use the same permission settings as the knowledge base category. The article or category will otherwise have its own permission enforcement instead of inheriting it from the parent.

When marked as Public, an article or category will be visible to all Client Portal visitors, including unauthenticated users. Being marked as Published will only display the article or category if the user is logged in. This can be used in combination with the Article Permissions setting if the article has group-based visibility. Any number of user groups can be selected, and either the Allow ONLY or Allow All EXCEPT options can be selected for how the permission will affect the list of groups.

The TeamDynamix knowledge base is the knowledge management application within the Client Portal that can serve both purposes.

Features

Where to Find This

This feature appears in the TDAdmin and TDClient interfaces.

TDAdmin is where it the application is created and configured, TDClient is where service desk staff manages their incoming tickets through both the application and My Work, and TDClient is where students and constituents can create ticket requests.

Navigate to the knowledge base following these paths:

  • TDAdmin > Applications > [Client Portal Application] > Knowledge Base
  • TDClient > Knowledge Base

Where to Start

In TeamDynamix, knowledge base articles have a status. Articles start out as "not submitted," and they can then be submitted for review. You can use security role permissions to give certain people access to approve articles that have been submitted for review. Approved articles can be published, which means they can be visible to client portal users.

On a ticket, you can create a knowledge base article from a ticket update. This creates a new knowledge base article in the "not submitted" state, that you can then finish editing and submit for review.

Articles can be structured into categories. Articles and/or article categories can have permissions, which let you restrict certain categories or articles to be visible only to logged-in users, or only to members of certain groups. Articles can also be related to other articles, and articles can have attachments. Articles can have tags for easier searching.

Articles have permalinks--the links do not change if you move an article into a different category, and you can send the URL to other people.

It is common for organizations to create a top-level category called "Internal," that can only be seen by people who are members of the IT organization. By default, any articles in this category would inherit the category's permissions and therefore only be visible to internal employees.

Setting Up a New Knowledge Base

Creating a Knowledge Base Article

To be able to write a knowledge base article and submit it for review, you must have permission to Add Articles, and have TDNext access.

To create a new article:

  1. In TDClient, navigate to the category where the new article will live.
  2. Click the + New Article button.
  3. Once the New Article page, you could select a Category.
  4. Enter the Subject, Body, and Summary of the article.
  5. Add Tags.
  6. Select whether to be notified on feedback.
  7. Click Save.

If you have the permission to Review all articles, you will be able to select the Status of the article to choose whether it will be created as Submitted, Not Submitted, Approved, or Rejected.

Learn how to use article templates, and use revisions to see past versions of an article.

Submitting an Article for Review

After your article is saved, you will see the article page that will display in the knowledge base. This lets you review the article you just wrote.

Along the right side of the page is a Details section that gives the article ID, submission status, information on whether it is Published or Public, the Owner, and the Created and last Modified dates.

Above this Details section you will see an Edit Article button and a Submit Article button.

To submit an article for review, click the Submit Article button.

Once submitted, a user without the Always Edit Articles permission cannot edit the article again unless the reviewer rejects and send it back to them. Just being the owner/creator of an article does not inherently give a user the ability to edit their articles.

A knowledge owner with permission to publish articles will review and publish the article.

Adding Related Articles

You can add related articles to your knowledge base article to quickly link readers to other related materials. Related articles appear on the right side of the article page beneath the Details panel.

To add a related article:

  1. In the Client Portal, open the knowledge base and navigate to the desired article.
  2. Click Edit Article.
  3. Click the Related Articles tab.
  4. Search for the article you would like to link, either by typing in the search or clicking the magnifying glass.
  5. Once you have selected an article to link, click Add.

Deleting Knowledge Base Articles

To delete an article, you must have the ability to edit an article as well as the Delete KB Articles permission. If you do not have these permissions, consult with your organization's TeamDynamix administrator. Alternatively, if you are the creator of an article, have access to TDNext, and have not yet submitted your article for review, it can be deleted.

Instead of deleting articles, we recommend using the Archived status to keep the old article in the event that you need to refer back to it. This can be found on the article Settings tab.

To delete an article:

  1. In the Client Portal, open the knowledge base and navigate to the desired article.
  2. Click Edit Article.
  3. On the Edit page, click Delete Article.
  4. You will be prompted with a confirmation box. You cannot undo this action.

Knowledge Base Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q. How can I limit knowledge base articles to be visible only to my department/division?

A. There are several settings that affect knowledge base article visibility: the status of the article; whether it's Published; and the article's security settings. Some organizations give their department's users the View all articles security role permission, which lets people see every single article. Others rely on the Published flag--if an article is approved but not published, then it will be visible only to people with TDNext access. Others create a knowledge base category called something like "Internal knowledge" and share that category with a group representing internal staff. Furthermore, you can add specific knowledge bases to specific client portals apps, which also can help reduce visibility to people who may not have access to that client portal app.

Q. How can I report on articles?

A. There is a Knowledge base article report source, which you can access in TDNext from ticketing applications as well as from Analysis.

Q. Who can see knowledge base feedback?

A. Depending on your settings, logged in users (or anyone in the world) can provide feedback including whether an article is helpful along with notes. Only TDNext users can see the feedback details.

Q. How should we handle knowledge base feedback?

A. In the knowledge base, there is a Feedback option. This lets you review feedback and filter for feedback that is Not Addressed. You can click on this feedback to mark it addressed. This is a simple workflow for ensuring that all feedback is reviewed.

Q. How can I ensure my permissions are set appropriately?

A. In the knowledge base, there is a Permissions Audit option. This will show all unique knowledge base permissions, including a broken link icon whenever the permissions are changed.

Q. Can I add inline images to knowledge base articles?

A. Yes. Using the knowledge base editor, click the picture icon. In the dialog box that appears, one of the tabs is called Upload. This lets you upload a picture that you can then insert into the knowledge base article. 

Q. How does the 'publish' check box work?

A. In general, a published item will be visible to users who only have access to TDClient in a read-only form. The TDClient user may be able to interact with that item, such as add comments or attachments, but they will not be able to edit/delete that item. An item may be unpublished at any time, thus removing access to that item from the TDClient user. Unpublishing items has no affect to a user with access to the TDNext application.

Gotchas & Pitfalls

  • Institutions often find importing knowledge base articles challenging both for technical and editorial reasons.
  • There are several mechanisms to import articles, but they cannot handle categories.
  • The need to review old articles or make updates to content or metadata can make bulk importing impractical.
  • Keeping content up to date requires regular care. To combat this, the TDX system allows clients to leave feedback on knowledge base articles. This enables clients to provide suggestions on how articles can be improved, or comment upon which parts of the document are successful. It is, however, up to the article's owner to ensure that feedback is addressed. When editing an article, the Notify Owner on Feedback option in the Settings tab can be selected so that the article’s owner receives an email whenever the article receives feedback.

Examples

To get some ideas of what the knowledge base application can do for you, have a look at:

Below are example knowledge base article titles.

Institution A

  • Adding a picture to Office 365 Exchange Account
  • Best Practice - Student Worker Time Approval Process
  • Bomgar Basics
  • Forgot Password?
  • Media Services Equipment: Wireless Microphones
  • Student Worker Walk-In Script
  • Troubleshooting Procedures - Software

Institution B

  • Cell Phone Stipend FAQ
  • Change Telephone Service
  • DocuSign: Managing Forms/Signatures
  • Install Office on a Personal Computer
  • OneDrive Best Practices
  • Remote Wipe
100% helpful - 3 reviews

Details

Article ID: 12529
Created
Mon 4/25/16 9:59 PM
Modified
Thu 11/18/21 2:11 PM