Infographic: Anatomy of the Service Desk in 2016

By Ollie O’Donoghue from Service Desk Institute

service desk

For a few months now, I’ve been talking about the evolution of service desk staffing models. I’ve become more convinced of this change as we publish more and more SDI research. I have the privileged position of being able to look at all SDI research as a whole, which means that while reports will have a particular focus, I can marry the findings up with other research to draw broader conclusions.

I have been able to do this with the recently published Anatomy of a Service Desk report, kindly sponsored by LANDESK. The report focuses on how service desk professionals spend their time, the strains and pressures of day-to-day service desk activity and the perception they have of their colleagues and access to resources. All said, the report is refreshingly positive; professionals felt less pressured and stressed than ever before, and there is an increasing focus on proactivity and strategy over the reactive firefighting that has dominated the landscape for many years.

It’s the latter point that interests me the most. Although not a remarkably significant increase – the average service desk now spends 38% of its time on strategic projects, an increase of 5% since 2012 – it’s possible to draw some insight when matching the increase with other trends in the industry.

Specifically, the increased utilization of technologies to ‘sponge up’ some reactive support is a trend I’ve been wittering on about for a while. My argument for the inevitable rise of technology is based on several themes – customer and staff expectations, the increased prevalence and cost-effectiveness of the technologies themselves, and the drive to provide more value with less resource to name a few.

What interests me is whether the positive results we’ve seen in the Anatomy of the Service Desk research and the increased adoption of technologies noted in other reports are linked. Are professionals less pressured and stressed because self-help and self-service are absorbing some of the reactive support burdens? Are service desks now better able to focus on strategic projects because automation has reduced time-consuming manual tasks?

At the moment, the correlation could just be a coincidence. However, it’s food for thought until the next piece of SDI research is published looking to link all the trends together.

I will be talking about these trends at LANDESK Connect 16 this year; I hope to see you all there and look forward to joining you all in debating what these trends mean for us and our industry.

Click below to download the FREE report!

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User-Based vs. Device-Based Pricing

With the increasing impact of BYOD on businesses, it makes sense to look at the difference between user-based and device-based pricing. Different sources such as studies from Cisco report that people are carrying around 3 devices each. Another statistic I recently saw reported that people in Great Britain are switching their focus from one device to another more than 20 times per hour. Wow! Talk about a little ADD. Who knows, it might even be worse in the Americas. Maybe ADD in technology parlance should stand for Added Device Disorder.

But what does this added device disorder do to your IT budget? If you’re currently licensing everything based on each device, the cost will skyrocket over the next few years. This short animated video talks more about the dilemmas you could be facing:



Benchmarking the Service Desk

Most people, regardless of their job role or the industry they work in, are interested in what their peers do, so they can compare and benchmark themselves. In fact, I love networking events for that very reason, and use them as a way to learn about better ways of doing things by picking the brains of my fellow networkers!

The LANDesk customers I speak to, feel the same. There is not always time to get out of the office and network, or read lengthy best practice whitepapers. So, for some years now, I have been working with the Service Desk Institute (SDI) in the UK to run a bi-annual survey so that we can benchmark various aspects of the service desk environment and create an easy to read report.

We ask lots of different questions from service desk salaries (let’s be honest…we all want to know what our peers earn) through to more details on adoption of service desk processes such as SLAs and of course, the all-important reporting and analytics.

It is always interesting to read through the results and look at how things are evolving in the fast paced environment of a service desk. I think one of the most interesting statistics is that 96% of service desks will use self-service to combat smaller team sizes. It is interesting that the report highlights that staff numbers have been shrinking since 2007 and seemingly, the adoption of service desk technologies is being used as a way to ensure that the end-user still receives a high level of customer service.

It is also really heartening to see that the main indicator of success for service desks is customer satisfaction and the SDI tell me that they see an increase in the demand for analysts who have fantastic customer service skills. There is a perception that technical skills can be learnt but customer service is more to do with personality and attitude… maybe a bit controversial but, in my humble opinion, very true.

I’d probably say that there will be no major, fall off your chair with shock, surprises in this report for you hard-working, well informed Service Desk professionals out there BUT I think it is well worth a read, it is definitely food for thought, and who knows, you might pick up a tip or two!

Healthcare IT – Was the Service Design Fit For Purpose?

Last week’s news saw that the CIO of left his post, not a surprise given a catalogue of events. It follows massive technical issues with the web site associated with the affordable Healthcare Act in the USA, which prevented people from registering for insurance coverage and sent unreliable data to insurance companies which caused complete service downtime.

Since going live, the site has reportedly been plagued with issues of reliability, stability and the inability to operate on a scale large enough to handle thousands of concurrent visitors.

This caused at least 2 major outages lasting a couple of days each. In the chaos that has ensued, tech experts have been brought in from the likes of Google and Oracle to rebuild the site; changing the site architecture and adding a faster database, which ironically is causing more outages. I am sure this is adding to the woes of the service desk team on the frontline as well as the rest of the IT team.

Now, I preface my next piece by saying I know that ITIL is not the only best practice fruit, but these events do seem to illustrate that a comparison or closer look at one of the ITIL disciplines of Service Design  and some of the processes within has some weight. Whether adhered to rigidly or as a guiding force.

For those not familiar with ITIL, the role of Service Design in the Service Lifecycle is the focus for the design of IT services; their architecture, processes, polices and documentation to meet business requirements or outcomes, now and in the future. Of course it’s easy to provide these thoughts after the fact, but below are some of the processes that might have had a bearing on the outcome if considered (note for the ITIL experts among you this is in brief) and from there I’ll let you decide if there is merit.

  • Service Level Management – agreeing with the business and documenting SLAs targets for the service which are monitored and reported out.
  • Availability Management – focuses on continually optimizing and proactively improving the availability of IT services ensuring targets are measured and achieved. Within this area consideration is also given to reliability, maintainability, and serviceability of the complete service and the component items.
  • Capacity Management – consideration of the capacity required by an IT service to meet the agreed needs of the business established in the SLA.
  • IT Service Continuity Management – is concerned with risk reduction and maintenance of recovery plans in the event of a disaster.
  • IT Security Management – development and management of the security policy aligned with business security to ensure effective management of information security.

I know that the role of the CIO is one full of dilemmas, needing to balance costs against speed and agility, efficiency versus responsiveness, but above all the one guiding principle has got to be to engage with the business to truly understand the business requirement and design the service accordingly. In this case is lucky that they have the capability to bring in the best of the best experts, for those CIOs where cost avoidance is still king the recovery plan could be a whole lot different and your exit a whole lot faster.

We at LANDesk are proud to be associated with Healthcare customers such as Family Health International, Kent & Medway Health Informatics (UK) and Advocate Healthcare,all on the frontline in patient care and in healthcare insurance. Our Service Management solution is both ITILv3 verified on all 15 processes and forms part of a wider LANDesk User Oriented IT portfolio that helps you put your users and business requirements front and center.

Learning to Run

I had developed aches and pains from running because I had picked up a few bad behaviors by emulating others rather than looking at my own individual technique. The same is true with IT. Without knowing the users you serve, the context that they work in and what they need to achieve you could do more harm than good by doing what everyone else is doing.

Last year I started training for a half marathon. I frequently ran with a coworker who was fitter and faster. In order to keep up I started changing my running style, copying hers.

It started out pretty well. My speed and distance increased as the weeks went on but then I started to get some aches in my hips. No matter, I self-diagnosed the problem on the internet and kept going– no pain, no gain as they say. A couple of weeks before the half marathon my knees started hurting. This time it was severe enough to prevent me from running. So I did something you might think a little strange – I went back to school to learn how to run. The first thing I was told was that that the hip pain was the first warning sign that I was doing something wrong.

Most of us think running is easy. If we haven’t run before, we watch our training partners, athletes on TV, or find an internet article to teach us. At running school I was shown a video of how I run and all my bad points were highlighted in Technicolor detail. What I actually learned was that I had developed aches and pains because I had  picked up a few bad behaviors by emulating others rather than looking at my own individual technique. In addition, I needed to be aware of my location when I was running so that I didn’t cause undue stress to my joints and body in total. The result was that I received a program tailored to me after completing my first half marathon. I’m looking forward to running my next one soon.

It’s well known that the biggest issue that IT faces at the moment is improving customer satisfaction. Most articles suggest all you need to fix this is to reduce the time taken to resolve incidents for your users and the problem will be solved. However, there is a lot more that you need to learn about your own customers and what is best for them before you try to solve the problem.

Why? Because in many cases an assumption has been made based on a set of standard service desk metrics that are pumped out every day or week grouping together all customers no matter who they are, where they are and what their priorities of the moment are.  I’ve read on forums about many service desks who want to know what the industry average incident resolution time is or cost per incident should be so that they can take steps to emulate these stats. They are prepared to do whatever it takes to meet them from changing tools to re-organizing their teams.

But it’s time to stop running and learn about the users that make up your organizational body of customers – where and when they experience IT-related stress and strain and what workarounds they are putting in place themselves that could cause more serious concerns for the IT organization further down the line.

Without knowing the users you serve, the context that they work in and what they need to achieve you could do more harm than good by doing what everyone else is doing. f you are going to last the distance and make real improvements in your customer satisfaction, you need to listen to your customer body and understand the individual outcomes they want.

User Oriented IT – as a well-known slogan states “Just Do IT”

Creative Service Desk Solutions

Each implementation is tailored by the consultant, customer, or partner to suit the business requirements of the company.

Each Service Desk implementation is tailored by the consultant, customer, or partner to suit the business requirements of the company.

A few weeks ago one of our support teams had their quarterly team activity in a meeting room.  It wasn’t the most exciting of venues, but our plans for an evening of rowing boats had been scuppered by the English weather.  Instead, we enjoyed some Nepalese cuisine and live music from one of the team members who had brought his guitar.  It turned out that he is a singer-songwriter in his spare time and, lucky for us, is actually very good at both.

His singing got us talking about the other things that we like to do outside of work.  Much to my surprise, many of us in technical support are actually quite creative.  For example, if I get the chance I love to paint (and I don’t mean walls either).

The more I thought about this, the more I realized that there are times when I do get to be very creative when I work with the LANDesk Service Desk support team. Each implementation is tailored by the consultant, customer, or partner to suit the business requirements of the company.  I’ve seen people get very creative with dashboards, window designs, reports, color schemes, and process flow—just to name a few.  One of the most rewarding parts of my job is to be a part of helping a customer to realize their goals with the product and implement creative product design changes that people and the organization will benefit from.

So I was really pleased that customers suggested we create a new space on the LANDesk Community where they could share the creative solutions they’ve achieved with other customers.  Please take a moment to check out LANDesk Share IT on the community to look for creative inspiration or to show us what you can do with LANDesk products! It’s a newly created area but we’ve already had some brilliant and creative solutions across all our products that we think you might benefit from.

Service Catalogues: Don’t Build a Vending Machine

The vending machine focus is all on the front end delivery (although even that has its down sides without controls over who can purchase items). And that is where many service catalogue projects fall down.

The vending machine focus is all on the front end delivery (although even that has its down sides without controls over who can purchase items). And that is where many service catalogue projects fall down.

IT professionals these days can’t do anything without being told that their emphasis should be to focus on the customer and customer service. User Oriented IT is about focusing on the needs of the user, it also applies to IT since they use tools to solve customer issues and satisfy requests as well as the user as a customer of IT services.

That is why it’s important to build a service catalogue instead of a vending machine.

A food vending machine’s sole purpose is to dispense products by displaying everything to everyone regardless of cost, dietary requirements or healthiness of snack for the consumer. By pushing a button the mechanical workings kick into gear and the product drops into the service tray for the consumer to pick out and then wrestle with the package to get it open. Meanwhile the stock in the vending machine depletes and also eventually goes out of date. The person responsible for maintaining the vending machine must regularly travel to its site open up the machine, check and replenish stock levels, empty the change and remove any out of dated stock. He may then need to manually enter these details into a separate stock and ordering system to keep the process going.

The vending machine focus is all on the front end delivery (although even that has its down sides without controls over who can purchase items). And that is where many service catalogue projects fall down. We live in a world where online catalogues are everywhere for consumers to view and buy things from and that is the vision that most people have of what a service catalogue should be.

The decision to implement a service catalogue and the on-going project often focuses on the end user of IT and their need to get services faster. Projects fall into the trap of focusing solely on the front end look and feel, ensuring that employees see a catalogue that matches their corporate branding guidelines and is easy to navigate. Now I’m not that saying these factors should not be in the project mix. However, equal attention must be paid to the backend process. If not, IT will end up no better off than a vending machine stocker having to manually service every request, checking it’s valid, check licensing levels for software as well as leaving the consumer experience at the unopened package.

Service Catalogues should be part of a bigger initiative. Service Catalogues display only the live services that end users can see but there will be a whole lot of IT services that IT manage throughout the lifecycle in a technical services catalogue which will not be visible to the end user and should be part of the service portfolio. If you are thinking first and foremost of diving into the middle with a service catalogue purely to provide a shop front end to your end users, then you are doing it for the worn reasons and it could cost more time, resources, and money in the long term.

When thinking about a Service Catalogue project you need to think holistically about your service portfolio, the service delivery as a whole, all of the stakeholders it touches and the service improvements it will make. Start by asking why it’s needed. The answer should include the optimization of IT processes and systems through integration and automation, the ability to manage IT costs by accounting for and reducing costs without detriment to service levels, and managing business risk and resources as well as providing an attractive front end delivery mechanism. When undertaking a service catalogue project you should be analyzing your existing portfolio of services


Your audience for a service catalogue is also not as straight forward as the end user requesting a service. Your audience should also think about what the business manager who runs a team and a budget and will want views of, what services the team is consuming and the cost of those services. In addition, other IT professionals in your organization who need a view of service levels, key metrics and dates that are critical to the business.

As you can see there is a lot to consider, ITIL does not focus on a single service catalogue process for a reason, it focuses on the full service portfolio in Service Design and request fulfillment processes as part of Service Operation. Like all things ITSM building and launching a service catalogue is a journey of discovery and continual improvement.

Red Delicious Wizard and the User-Oriented IT Battle Cry


Picture yourself as the leader of a mighty army Every individual user in your IT environment has their weapon(s) of choice.

Everyone has their preferences and comfort zones when it comes to technology the technology they use—and even where they use it. With the abundance of devices, technological gadgets and tools available to us today there is, of course, an exponential increase of users who expect freedom to choose which tools they’ll use for work.

Every individual user in your IT environment has their weapon(s) of choice.

Let’s put things in to perspective: Picture yourself as the leader of a mighty army. You are about to lead them into an epic battle. You walk your camp, surveying your soldiers in their preparation; your shoulders held back and head held high, as [insert whatever your choice of epic attire in this situation may be: Spartan-like cape…warrior kilt…hobbit cloak…] dramatically embellishes your awesomeness—because you are just that cool.

As you walk, you see one of your soldiers sparring with another and you witness his sword crash down, splitting the other soldier’s sword in two. You gasp at the strength this expert swordsman wields with this mighty weapon of his. But then wait, you pause, and notice the sword he is using so gracefully is NOT the approved make and model you distributed previously to the army. This, obviously, is no good. You confiscate the sword and replace it with one of the permitted types.

The once impressive swordsman, untrained and not used to this new sword, now clumsily spars. You don’t really notice, though, because you’ve already walked on.

A different soldier approaches you. She has a bow slung over her shoulder, but she requests to be equipped with some throwing knives as well, and maybe even a small sword in case close combat becomes necessary. You stare at her, your eyes bulge and twitch a bit at what she is asking for.

“You want multiple weapons?!?!”

“Well, yes, I would be far more useful in a variety of situations that can and will arise in battle, if I did”

You still stare at her, looking at the magnificent weapon she already has slung over her shoulder and with finality in your voice say,

“You’ve already got a great bow to fight with. I don’t see why I should have to equip you with MORE”

“Well I do have my own throwing knives I could use if we don’t have the resources to get new ones…”

“What?! I just can’t keep track of all that, and who knows where you’ll throw those things— I can’t permit the risk of it”

“Well, then I was wondering if I could perch myself in a different location than the rest of the army so I can shoot from a more ideal spot for my own skill-set. I’m a great distance shooter”

“You want to fight from a different location than the rest of us????”

“Well…yes….I am an archer…”

By now your eyes are protruding like a bug’s, your throat is parched because suddenly you feel exhaustedly thirsty, and my gosh is it getting hotter out here? You tug at your collar, and pull yourself together long enough to shut the soldier’s requests down with a passionate statement relating to how the army must fight TOGETHER in the SAME place with only approved weapons because that’s just how it is and always has been.

You are getting the picture, right? If you’re leading an army into an epic battle and you have a number of soldiers with different skill-sets with a variety of weapons, the most reasonable strategy is to make use of those skills and all of the tools available to you. Why do something less efficiently when the skills and tools exist to help you execute with a higher level of efficiency?

To some, BYOD, multiple devices, increasingly mobile employees, and tech savvy end-users may seem like too much RISK.

Sure, enabling and maximizing productivity for the user is the ideal goal and an important factor to you. But what good is rowing a boat faster and stronger if at the same time you subsequently punch a number of holes in the boat?

We need to be able to maximize user productivity but without unleashing a hellish mess for IT to deal with. And this is where the balance comes in. With LANDesk, user-oriented IT does not mean stripping IT of control or weakening their ability to do their job. No. This is all about productivity, right?

That means productivity for both the user and IT.

The beauty of user-oriented IT is it embraces the changes that are already happening and inevitable in your IT environment. BYOD is inescapable; using multiple devices to accomplish various tasks is already the norm; remote employees are all over the map; and users are becoming more and more tech savvy—resulting in users that want, and are capable of, more responsibility.

User-oriented IT is a strategic shift in the industry than can incrementally improve productivity for every person in your organization—users and IT alike. It is a vision that leverages all platforms and devices a user may choose in order to more effectively do his or her work. And with LANDesk, it is a strategy and a vision that is achievable.

So embrace change. Let Apple wizards be Apple wizards. And arm your users with the ‘weapons’ they need to utilize their skills to the max. LANDesk will help you keep that new-found power of productivity harnessed and under control.

Write the User-Oriented IT Constitution

Now that the BYOD revolution has changed the landscape of business productivity for nearly every organization as well as changed the expectations of users with their IT departments, it’s time to look at creating a user-oriented constitution for IT.

Recently United States celebrated Independence Day.  That’s the day when the people said they could govern ourselves better and were creating a new government.

LANDesk’s America’s Field Marketing Director came up with a related analogy for User-Oriented IT. He brought up the fact that when the iPhone and the iPad came out and users started bringing them to work, it was like the Declaration of Independence, with users stating that they could be productive without IT. In other words IT no longer controlled all the assets that made people productive at work.

After the American colonies won their independence, they were faced with the issue of banding together and becoming a nation or remaining independent states or colonies. It took a concerted effort by many delegates to create the US Constitution, which outlines the governing principles by which to “form a more perfect union” or government. It took four months to create the US Constitution, nearly a year for the states to ratify it and another year and a half to fully implement all three branches of the government. The question that has to be asked is this: In a governing sense did the Declaration of Independence provide freedom or did the Constitution, or is freedom created in the actions and responsibility of the everyday people?

IT faces similar questions. Now that the BYOD revolution has changed the landscape of business productivity for nearly every organization as well as changed the expectations of users with their IT departments, it’s time to look at creating a user-oriented constitution (read: strategy) for IT. It would include checks and balances between users and IT, where more responsibility and initiative is taken by the users, which would give them more choice and freedom. Meanwhile, IT could still have control and protect the data that’s the lifeblood of the organization.

This document is really your IT strategy and how you will adopt certain policies and processes to accommodate the revolution of BYOD. Making sure the user enjoys greater freedom and choice will ensure the strategic position of IT into the future as well as increase the overall productivity of nearly every user in your organization.

Here are seven characteristics of what a User-Oriented IT Constitution or Strategy should include:

  1. Establish productivity gains as goals of the constitution
  2. Align IT spend with business process and show what percentage of the IT investment will go toward increasing user productivity
  3. Identify governance, policy, and security guidelines
  4. Write it in such a way that it spells out the principles of governance more than the details of policy. Detailed policies could be included in an accompanying document.
  5. Provide clear guidance on who owns or is responsible for what in the user-oriented IT experience (e.g., the goals of a self-service model. What will IT provide and what experience and responsibility will the user have.)
  6. Make it easy to articulate the strategy to Business Leaders or involve them in its creation.
  7. Provide for the incremental evolution of IT that demonstrates how current IT operations and management will continue and co-exist with new methods

Once the strategy is in place, it needs to be accompanied by a straightforward action plan for delivering on User-Oriented IT—preferably in phases. You may want to consult with LANDesk professional services about developing the action along with your strategy. That way your IT department can continue to demonstrate your strategic position by empowering every user in your organization.

Much like the implementation of a new government after a revolution or maybe writing an amendment to a constitution so the government works better, this project takes some time and should be done in stages. After all, it took the United States roughly three years to create a new form of government and implement it. With today’s technology, you should be able to do it faster. However, see if you can outline your constitution/strategy and an action plan that details an 18-month to three-year implementation for user-oriented IT in your organization. If you do this, you’ll demonstrate to your organization how strategic IT really is and how much managed freedom you can provide to the entire organization.

KCS in Action

KCS is more about having the right people than it is about having the right processes. That starts with employing people who care about not just solving the customer’s issue but taking the time to capture it.

I have worked within support teams for half my life, and I’ve experienced many changes over the years.  In essence support remains the same: helping someone who needs technical assistance. However, the way we go about it has become both easier and more challenging in equal measures.  Expectations have gone up, (unfortunately I no longer receive a bunch of flowers just for helping someone to clear up their hard disk!), but technology improvements have also enabled us to use our time much more efficiently.

In the past, I have worked for support organizations where it has felt so busy that we had no time for anything other than working through “the backlog.”  I now realize that we were so focused on reactive support that we didn’t realize quite how much we could benefit from stepping away from this to put some of our efforts into proactively creating a knowledge repository.

At LANDesk, we make sure that our support organization looks at success as being not just fixing issues or answering questions once, but also effectively making use of what we’ve learned during that process.  We do this by working closely with the Development teams to highlight areas where we feel we should focus on improving product quality and the user experience.  Another area in which we put extra emphasis is on creating and improving knowledge content which enables our customers, partners, and support teams to find their own solutions.  This is where my role comes in.

The knowledge sharing methodology which we have invested in is called Knowledge Centered Support (KCS).  It made sense to us that every problem we solve is potentially some new information that should be easily captured so that it can be reused again.  Over the years I have seen first-hand that the shift has gone from being asked the same questions repeatedly to receiving less volume but each question of a greater complexity.  This brings its own challenges, but I feel a sense of relief that the experience I had when starting in support of picking up the phone to repeat the same set of steps multiple times a day has now gone.

With KCS it has been a learning process about what works and what doesn’t.  Most of all what we have learned is that KCS isn’t something you can implement and then leave alone.  It’s something which needs constantly tweaking, emphasizing, and learning from.

We’ve also learned that KCS is more about having the right people than it is about having the right processes.  That starts with employing people who care about not just solving the customer’s issue but taking the time to capture it.  It also extends right up to the management team knowing that who they should value within their organization are not just the heroes who can rescue a bad situation but those who can explain the steps that they took so that they can be understood and followed again.

Here are tips of things that have worked for us:

  • Be as transparent as you dare.  If people know who wrote a piece of knowledge content they can thank them or ask them to clarify something.  The author can also feel some pride in what they’ve written.  People love seeing that an article they’ve written has helped someone else to be successful.  It spurs them on to write some more.
  • Team-based targets rather than individual targets.  At LANDesk Support we can all see what individual contribution our colleagues have made and this helps to encourage some competitive streaks.  However the targets we set are all team-based.  This means that close colleagues will all work to improve the content together rather than trying to keep the best information for themselves.
  • Some knowledge is better than no knowledge.  Yes, you should set some guidelines and you should have some processes to maintain the quality level.  Ensure that you don’t have too many rules and they aren’t too strict.  If it’s an unpleasant or lengthy experience for the knowledge author they won’t want to go through it again, and there’s always plenty of other things they could be doing instead.
  • Make recognition both fun and official.  By following KCS, we recognize only when a piece of knowledge has been successfully used to solve a problem, not just that it was created.  Fun bobble-head trophies, competitions, and scoreboards all work well to give recognition to people who have made extra efforts with knowledge sharing.  What works even better is if top knowledge contributors are also more likely candidates for official employee recognition and are often the first to be considered for promotion.
  • Keep training and coaching.  Don’t just send an email or update a document when your processes change, people don’t always read them or remember what they’ve read.  Invest some time in meeting with individuals as often as you can to talk about how things work, how they are working, and what steps can be taken to be even better.  Meet with new starters as a part of their induction process but don’t forget the people who have been in the team a long time who may need to rethink the way they work.
  • Mindset is important.  People need to understand that in order to write a great knowledge article you don’t need to be an expert.  You just need to identify a knowledge gap and know enough to be able to fill it.  A well-written knowledge article from a new member of staff can sometimes be of equal value as a whitepaper written by an expert on that topic.

We are still learning and can identify many places where we still want to improve.  What we do feel now is that we truly have the commitment and recognition for knowledge sharing as an important part of what we do as a department.  We believe that with this in place the rest will come one step at a time.