Like any company, the whole of Shepley Bulfinch knows significantly more than any single member of the firm. Buildings are complicated, and we need to be able to leverage our collective experience on every project. In 2015, we identified that we had a problem: “We have no system for sharing questions and answers firm-wide.” We needed to create a repeatable process with clear expectations for transferring the right knowledge at the right time. Welcome #AskFinch.
Finch is what we call our company intranet, and #AskFinch became the moniker for a new knowledge sharing process. Initially, we identified that we were already using three main methods for asking questions and getting answers:
- Find someone you know that might have an answer, and asked them directly.
- Email a group of identified experts in the firm, and ask them to weigh in.
- Post the question to our fledgling intranet, and hope someone responds.
However, each of these approaches had disadvantages—from limited visibility and perspective, to being disruptive—and a lack of opportunity to benefit from the knowledge of our collective Bulfinches. So, we designed a new process…