Breaking Down The Sugar CRM Knowledge Base

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Sugar CRM is one of the most popular and user-friendly CRM platforms out there. One of the best features of the platform is the great attention to detail when it comes to customer service. The Knowledge Base module of the platform is one of the best manifestations of this concern to serve the needs of their clients.

The Knowledge Base allows users to create, maintain, and publish information based on their own interests and experiences. These articles are available to all other Sugar CRM users within the organization as well as to the customers. The articles can range from being instructional in nature to those that purely provide information. These articles can be constantly updated as the users find better ways to modulate their content.

This module enables an organization to effectively communicate useful information and share management strategies between users and clients. This allows the entire workforce to be on the same page on how to go about the business processes. It also allows customers to be able to look up any of their queries without having to go through the arduous process of communicating a customer service representative.

In this article, we will explore the exact features, lists, and records that make the Sugar CRM’s Knowledge Base module unique and useful. So without further ado, let’s dive in!

Managing Articles

Users can configure the types of fields available to them in the KB module. The fields that come with an out-of-the-box version contain several options when it comes to managing articles. These fields can be used to make the articles reflect the nature and fulfill the requirements of the company. 

The ‘Active Revision’ field present in the KB module, for example, denotes the most recent version of an article. This field sets up automatically once a new revision has been made on an article that is yet to be published. Other fields include the likes of ‘Created By’ and ‘Approved By’ categories. Dates of modification, expiration, and publishing are also listed in these fields.

The module also has a means of letting users know the status of a particular article. With a color-coded label attached, users can quickly discern the point along the pipeline where the article is currently situated. Administrators can configure these statuses and based on the requirements of a particular organization, some of the labels can be skipped.

The articles can be created via several methods, such as the ‘Create’ button in the KB module, the KB subpanel, or by duplicating an existing article. The collection of the information available in KB can be viewed in several different ways. These include viewing via record or list views, or through activity streams, dashlets, reports, or recently viewed. Furthermore, they can be edited, deleted, or shared in several different ways. 

Module View And List View

The KB module can be found in Sugar CRM by accessing ‘more’ tabs on the navigation bar that lists different modules. Once the KB module opens up, a list of actions can be made visible via the drop-down menu. These actions include creating and viewing articles or templates, viewing recent articles, and creating or accessing the menu of favorite articles. The KB module could appear as a hidden tab by default, making it difficult to find for new users. In this case, users would need to change their user preferences. Additionally, the administrator has the ability to remove KB access of certain users which might also render the tab invisible.

In the list view, users are able to all KB records and search and filter specific articles. Within the field columns, users can view basic details of each record, or click on an article to view it. In the list view, users are also given the option to carry out mass actions such as jointly updating or deleting records. The Record Actions menu in the list view also allows users to perform actions on each article. The actions include editing, revision, localization, and deletion, among others.

Publishing Articles

Once an article is published, it is made visible to all the users within the organization who use the Sugar platform. The article’s status changes to an active revision until a new revision is made. As an active revision, the article can be accessed from the KB list view. For the purposes of publishing, the article can be published manually, or an automatic publishing can be scheduled.

Apart from searching for published articles using the search and filter tools, users can also navigate the hierarchical structure of categories to find the one they are looking for. For both the list view and the record view, a ‘Knowledge Base Categories & Published Articles’ dashlet can be added alongside. When viewing an article in the record view, the dashlet pops up itself, thus confirming the placement of the article.

Article Ratings

Each piece of writing can be reviewed as useful or not useful using the buttons available in the record view. If an article is revised, the tally for useful and non-useful reviews is reset back to zero. The ratings can be viewed in a dashlet at the record view of that particular article. The dashlet, called ‘Usefulness for Articles’ can also be added to the KB record view’s intelligence pane so as to show the overall useful or not useful reviews that the article has, which is also displayed in the form of a graphic. Another dashlet, called the ‘Most Useful Published KB Articles’ displays the top-rated articles present in the Knowledge Base. 

Managing Localizations

Localization entails modifying an article to cater to a different audience, usually involving changes in the language. The administrators need to first add the desired language to the module. Once the languages are configured, the users will be able to create localizations. New localization articles can be created in several different ways. These include the list view, record view, as well as the localization subpanel. The localization subpanel displays the details of the localization along with the record count of related articles. It also has the option to designate favorites, create hyperlinks, and create revisions.

Revising Articles

As hinted earlier in this blog, revisions of articles are required when the content of an existing article updates and new information needs to be incorporated in the Knowledge Base. Users are allowed to keep a history of past articles on top of the revised version. When a revision is created, all fields of the original article are duplicated except for the status which initially appears as a ‘draft’. 

If a revised article is deleted from the KB, only the latest, revised version gets deleted and a previous version of the article is promoted to the latest revision. A revision subpanel is present in every article’s record view. The subpanel shows article details, record count, and favorites as well as allows several actions such as create a new revision.

Our Two Bits!

The KB module is a unique repository of useful information that helps users and clients alike, navigate the often complex world of CRM platforms. The module consists of many more functionalities that make it easy to use. With the help of KB, users can optimize their business processes and streamline communication within their organization. The customer needs are also met well if the module is used to address and resolve popular queries that the clients can have access to. Rolustech provides its clients with the opportunity to do just that by helping them tailor their Sugar CRM platform according to their needs, especially when it comes to customizing the Knowledge Base module.

Rolustech is a SugarCRM Certified Developer & Partner Firm. We have helped several hundreds of firms with various SugarCRM Customizations, migrations and integrations. Contact us today for your FREE consultation session to look for the perfect plugins for your business.

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