We are thrilled to be recognized by the 451 research team, who emphasizes Shelf’s innovative role in the market as we continue to advance an AI-driven approach to managing company knowledge, which provides more accurate and consistent ways to store, discover, and share information.

Each quarter, the 451 research team engages directly with IT industry leaders to understand emerging technologies and competitive dynamics that drive market disruption. Their surveys are built on the wealth of data-driven insight and proprietary field research studies.

Shelf aims to simplify knowledge management for service operations

Shelf is a distributed software development company that applies technology to the problem of organizing knowledge for contact centers. By applying AI and data analysis, Shelf helps companies organize large quantities of unstructured knowledge regardless of its format, including text, audio, video, etc. Shelf’s approach to centralized knowledge ensures that the information customers get from agents or platforms is always consistent and accurate.

Organizing knowledge in the contact center has long been expensive and labor-intensive. That’s why, regardless of its direct effect on customer experience, it often doesn’t get done properly or is only completed on an ad hoc basis. This creates a whole list of issues:

  • Weak self-service. Companies lack sufficient process automation technology to maintain effective self-service channels like FAQ portals and chatbots.
  • Outdated content. A decentralized approach to knowledge management (KM) leads to information quickly getting out-of-date.
  • Weak search. Since knowledge is created without a clear structure, companies struggle with poor findability when a customer or an employee needs to know something specific.
  • Lost knowledge. Information gets lost in unobvious places like email or Slack, or simply exists in the form of tribal knowledge.
  • Time pressure. The problem of findability is amplified in the contact center as agents are measured by the speed to resolution.

So far, companies have been hesitant to kick off KM initiatives due to the complexity of keeping that store of knowledge updated and formatted for easy retrieval by agents.

Shelf’s solution to the KM inefficiency issue starts with AI

After evaluating Shelf, analysts at 451 Research noted,“Shelf’s platform aims to allow companies to organize their information and pursue KM in a way that leads to clean data, integrated with agent desktops, in an easily maintained format.”

Shelf applies AI to create a structured approach to KM, and employing this method ensures:

  • Powerful search experience. AI-driven search allows agents to find the location of keywords within documents, videos, audio and images to shorten the process of finding relevant content.
  • AI-driven content recommendations. Powered by MerlinAI, Shelf recommends specific content based on search queries and provides users with a much wider spectrum of resources than an ad hoc (or purely text-based) system without burying them in too much information.
  • Automated content maintenance. MerlinAI takes away the burden of manual content analysis. It can identify what information will soon be out of date, as well as take note of what specific content is high-value based on the frequency with which agents return to it, and it correlates certain content with successful interaction outcomes.
  • Professional setup. Shelf helps you build a clean, structured knowledge base that can be easily expanded. Knowledge AI and machine learning experts set up the initial information architecture, categories and taxonomy.

The 451 team concluded with one of the company’s significant strengths, “Shelf is entering a market that has a need for better data management with an approach that focuses on the  business outcomes of KM rather than on being able to check a box on an RFP.”