Knowledge Sharing and Decision-Making Services

Human Capital Business Process Re-Engineering

Rebuilding the Human Capital organization at a major mass transit authority

The Dallas Area Rapid Transit Authority (DART) is a regional transportation authority in the State of Texas. DART was organized to provide public and general transportation services to 13 cities in five counties: Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, and Rockwall. DART has nearly 3,700 budgeted positions and employs bus operators, train operators, mechanics, police, and professional and semiprofessional staff.


This initial project was organized into five work streams.

1. Diagnostic Review. Iknow started the assignment by conducting a thorough review of the HC Department’s processes and practices. Iknow conducted 46 interviews with two groups of HC stakeholders. One group was internal customers of the HC Department and included almost all of DART’s senior leadership team. The second group was the HC Department’s staff. Iknow prepared two customized interview guides and conducted initial interviews that lasted between 30 minutes to more than two hours each. A second round of interviews was performed, when appropriate. Iknow prepared detailed interview summaries to capture a complete record of all of the information collected.

In parallel, the Iknow team reviewed and analyzed relevant documentation on DART’s policies, practices, standard operating procedures (SOPs), systems, and internal controls.

2. Document the Current-State and Future-State HC Business Processes. The objectives of this work stream were to capture the “as-is” business processes for the Human Capital Department in its entirety, to develop recommendations on the “to-be” business processes, and to advise on business process improvements, automation opportunities, and system configuration changes that could increase process efficiency, staff effectiveness, and data and transaction accuracy.

Iknow started this work stream by reviewing DART’s process descriptions, automated work flows, SOPs, and any other relevant documentation on the core HC business processes. Specifically, Iknow conducted detailed analyses of DART’s 34 SOPs and the 89 automated DARTnet workflows to understand HC’s role and involvement in each. This analysis also included undocumented HC processes and practices.

3. Develop a New HC Organizational Structure. The objective of this work stream was to develop a new HC organizational structure that would support the new processes, information flows, and controls. Iknow incorporated several best practices into the new HC organization structure, including introducing alignment of the organizational structure with the HC business processes, introducing the concept of “high performing” work-centric teams, and flattening the HC Department’s span of control.

4. Compliance Review. This work stream analyzed DART’s compliance with federal, state, and local human resources-related laws, statutes, rules, regulations, and guidelines. Iknow reviewed DART’s Administrative and Hourly Employment Manuals, reviewed DART’s implementation of FTA Complaint No. 13-0163, and studied the implications of the FTA’s Circular 4704.1 as part of the compliance review.

5. Implementation Plan and Timeline. Iknow planned and conducted a half- day offsite workshop to discuss the HC improvement ideas and develop an implementation roadmap and timetable. The offsite was held at SMU’s Cox Executive Education facilities.

Subsequent iterations of the plan resulted in a portfolio of 21 projects as part of the initial wave of the Implementation Phase. Some of the various projects included: Redesign the Employee Recruitment Process, Update the DART Hourly Employment Manual and the Administrative Employment Manual, Relaunch the People Center, Develop and Implement a HC Data Analytics and Reporting Function, and Design, Develop, and Implement a HC Records Management Program.


The recommendations and roadmap were used by the Vice President of Human Capital to support her request for resources and funding for process redesign implementation.

Project Summary No.

Communities of Practice Site Redesign and Implementation

Strengthening knowledge sharing in a global consulting firm

A global management-consulting firm had a long-established knowledge management (KM) program. The firm’s primary knowledge repository was based on Microsoft SharePoint 2013 and it was the main collection and search location for project records and materials. The KM program had also deployed Communities of Practice (CoP) intranet sites, which displayed selected KM content for each sector/service line and provided other important CoP-related information.


Iknow’s project approach involved three phases:

1. Diagnostic Phase. Iknow conducted a detailed review of the current CoP sites and KM repository to understand the key usability and content management issues that need to be addressed during the project. This work included:

  • Review of previous user feedback.
  • Content audit, including types of content, the numbers of items displayed, and the static/dynamic split.
  • Extensive user interviews with all levels of firm's staff.
  • Review of current content management procedures for the CoP sites.
  • Technical review of how the current CoP sites were populated and administered in SharePoint, including the use of lists and libraries, Content Query web parts, and other web parts and menus.

2. Design Phase. Based on the diagnostic work, Iknow proposed a new SharePoint architecture and page design template for the CoP pages, including the required SharePoint components and functionality. This involved the following main tasks:

  • Requirements definition, based on the diagnostic work, summarized in a document that was discussed with the senior management.
  • “Wireframe” design preparation with several navigation options for discussion.
  • A technical design document, summarizing the SharePoint features and functionality to be developed based on the selected wireframe design.

Iknow’s recommended site architecture made use of SharePoint’s “managed navigation” and “term-driven pages” features:

  • Each site was based on a special “CoP” term set containing specified terms that had been copied from the main taxonomy.
  • Each page within a site was “term-driven” – meaning that it was based mainly on queries of KM data using a specific term from the site’s CoP term set.
  • The query-driven page content was organized into “tabs” based on different KM use cases (e.g., Selling, Project Delivery, Ideas, Research, People Search, and Projects) that were populated automatically with items that were tagged to the corresponding terms (topics and content types) and were flagged for inclusion on the site.

In addition:

  • Each CoP site had a “search within site” feature that returned only items that were flagged for inclusion on the site.
  • The sites had a free text/image area to allow custom content and branding for each CoP.

3. Implementation Phase. Working initially in a SharePoint development environment, and then migrating to staging and production environments, Iknow managed the development and deployment of the new sites. Activities included:

  • New site template creation – using the designs developed in the previous phase.
  • Content management process – working with each CoP to review content and select items for inclusion in the new sites, and reviewing tagging to ensure that content appears in the right places.
  • Content management tools – developing, testing, and deploying PowerShell scripts to facilitate batch tagging and content promotion based on CoP input from Excel sheets, as well as SharePoint grid views for rapid editing.
  • Testing – both internally in the team and with selected users, followed by remediation of any issues.
  • Documentation – for both new site creation and site administration.

The new CoP sites were successfully deployed on schedule and received very positive feedback from the firm's users across practice areas and countries.

The architecture and design has several advantages for future maintenance:

  • New CoP sites can be created very quickly by copying the standard pages from an existing site, editing them for custom terminology, and adding site navigation via the KM term.
  • New sub-sites can be created automatically by copying the desired term from the taxonomy – the sites are automatically populated by the page queries.
  • Changes to content tagging and best practice flagging are reflected immediately on the sites.
  • Items appear on the pages when they are tagged with the page term in any of the managed metadata fields. This ensures that content will appear on all relevant CoP sites.
  • CoP content managers use a well defined and proven process for periodic bulk review and updating of site content using Excel sheets or the SharePoint grid view.
Project Summary No.

Review of the Current Forecasting Tools and Processes

Applying financial knowledge to secure a State’s unemployment insurance benefits

The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) is responsible for the administration of the State’s Unemployment Compensation Program by establishing and maintaining the solvency of the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund and by providing re-employment services to South Carolina citizens. Specifically, DEW is responsible for paying unemployment insurance benefits, collecting unemployment taxes, helping people find jobs, matching businesses with qualified candidates, and collecting and disseminating state/federal employment statistics.


Iknow’s approach for completing the scope of work consisted of the following five tasks:

  1. Onsite interviews with key DEW staff.
  2. Analysis of the existing forecasting Excel spreadsheet.
  3. Review of the DEW’s forecasting-related reports.
  4. Review of documents received from Iknow’s data requests.
  5. Analysis of a representative set of historical expense profiles for grant contracts.

Iknow conducted ten in-person interviews with the DEW’s finance and executive staff and reviewed the DEW’s forecasting business process, data sources, assumptions, and tools.

Iknow discovered that the variability in the current financial forecasts was caused by two primary factors:

  1. Lack of appropriate models. The forecasting tools did not adequately characterize the DEW’s expected future revenue and expense streams.
  2. Incorrect simplifying assumptions. Several simplifying assumptions used in the current forecasting spreadsheet contributed to the large variances in the forecasts.

Iknow also found that the current financial forecasting processes and tools could be improved by making explicit the financial modeling assumptions, incorporating more sophisticated modeling approaches, documenting the forecasting business process, and using better software tools.

Lastly, Iknow researched commercial, off-the-shelf (COTS) forecasting/financial modeling/business intelligence (BI) software products and provided four product recommendations to the Chief Financial Officer.

Iknow summarized its analyses and findings in a written final report. The final report contained a series of recommended next steps.


The CFO accepted Iknow’s recommendations and asked Iknow to perform the improvements and systems implementation.

Project Summary No.

Business Intelligence Dashboards for Content Operations

Real-Time Monitoring and Alerting System for Electronic Content Deliveries

A leading publishing and financial information company purchases more than 34,000 externally licensed publications, datasets, and other research sources from information providers around the globe to support its own products and services.


Iknow conducted requirements sessions to identify and document the system’s desired functionality. Key system capabilities included:

  • Real-time monitoring of content deliveries and article counts.
  • Dynamic alarm methodology based on the historical publication and delivery patterns for each source.
  • Multiple views of the data for reporting at the individual staff level, center level, and Group level.
  • Predictive analysis.

Iknow prepared a business requirements document that included detailed written descriptions of the functionality of every proposed dashboard. The requirements document also included detailed wire frames that illustrated how the data would be displayed on each dashboard.

Iknow designed and implemented the following alerting logic:

  1. Pattern discovery for historical content. Iknow analyzed the historical data for content arrivals and developed algorithms for determining the “best fit” patterns. More than 775 patterns were identified and assigned to the content sources. Patterns were grouped into “day of the week” patterns (e.g., Monday/Wednesday/Friday); “calendar date” patterns (e.g., arrivals occurred on the 5th and 20th days of every month); and “longer period” patterns (e.g., quarterly or semiannually). The average arrival times, article quantities for each delivery date, statistical metrics (e.g., standard deviations), and altering thresholds were also calculated from the historical data.
  2. Delivery expectations for a specific date. Iknow developed an expected delivery calculation engine that generates a list of the expected content deliveries for a given date. The engine uses the identified arrival pattern for each source and creates a list of the expected arrivals.
  3. Alerting. Iknow developed a real-time alerting engine that notifies a Content Operations Specialist when an individual content delivery assigned to him or her falls outside of one or more of its expected thresholds. Specifically, the system monitors each content delivery expected on that date and creates alerts for lateness (which includes missing deliveries), quantity deviations that fall outside of the high- and low-volume thresholds, and other types of delivery problems.

The historical delivery patterns for each source are updated daily. The expected deliveries for the next day are calculated late in the day on the previous day. The alerting engine compares expected deliveries with actual deliveries every 1 to 2 minutes.

Iknow performed the following tasks:

  • Conducted multiple requirements gathering sessions with Content Operations personnel.
  • Developed Content Operations-specific use cases.
  • Identified and cataloged the source data elements.
  • Defined the calculated variables.
  • Developed and refined the statistical methodology for calculating late content deliveries.
  • Developed the monitoring and alerting logic.
  • Developed sketches, wire frames, and mockups of dashboard designs.
  • Architected, designed, and built the BI universe.
  • Architected, designed, and built the new database and database applications.
  • Architected, designed, and built the 12 dashboards.
  • Conducted user acceptance testing and refined the dashboards based on user feedback.
  • Prepared a user guide.
  • Conducted end-user training.

The monitoring and alerting system was implemented using SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence (BI) Platform and Microsoft SQL Server. The primary products used from the SAP BI Platform were Dashboards, Web Intelligence, and Universe. The core features deployed were reporting, interactive analysis, dashboards and visualization, data exploration, and advanced analytics.

The new system was deployed on a virtual private cloud (VPC) environment, hosted at Amazon Web Services, and custom data and application integration was implemented between AWS and the company’s secure data centers. SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) was used to perform data extraction, transformation, and load (ETL) steps.

Iknow’s primary deliverable was the design and development of customized dashboards for Content Operations end users, including the underlying solution logic, algorithms, and databases. Other deliverables included installing, configuring, and testing the SAP Business Intelligence Platform, integrating the new system with the company’s existing databases and applications, preparing the user guide, and delivering end-user training.

Two screen shots from the system are presented below. The first screen shot shows the late and missing content deliveries based on their expected arrival times.

Today's Activitiy Dashboard

Screen shot of Today's Activity Dashboard.

The second screen shot shows the actual delivery performance for a specific source.

Source Detail Dashboard

Screen shot of the Source Detail Dashboard.


The global media company has a monitoring and alerting system that provides real-time information about the delivery status of thousands of externally licensed publications, datasets, and other content sources. Content operations specialists now spend their time working with information providers on resolving content delivery problems because manual monitoring of content deliveries is no longer necessary. Customer satisfaction metrics have increased because there are less gaps in content coverage.

Project Summary No.

Business Process Improvement

Process Redesign and Simplification at a Major Intergovernmental Organization

A major intergovernmental organization, whose mission is to provide long-term humanitarian and developmental assistance to children and mothers, had embarked on a series of initiatives aimed at improving its internal efficiency and effectiveness. The organization relies on contributions from governments and private donors and its total annual income exceeds $3 billion USD/year. Most of the organization’s work is done in the field, with staff located in over 190 countries and territories.


Iknow began by conducting a thorough baseline assessment of current business process performance in the identified areas, using a combination of interviews and results of previous internal studies. This assessment yielded many potential improvements across all areas. For example, we found redundant process steps, lengthy review and approval processes, and opportunities for “lightening” controls on certain types of work, especially those dealing with low-value/high-transaction volume activities.

We then developed a methodology and selected specific tools for performing a more detailed analysis of the business processes. The tools included:

  • Process flow mapping, using the IDEF0 framework.
  • Risk identification and mitigation, including ways to reduce burdensome control requirements.
  • Improvement idea capture and evaluation templates, used to identify and evaluate ideas for addressing process complexity, long cycle times, and high costs.
  • Analysis of the potential impacts of making the identified process changes on cycle time, cost, and risk level.

These tools were employed by each internal working group. Iknow supported the working groups with guidance, advice, and coaching.

Iknow designed and led a three-day workshop where the working groups presented and further refined their process improvement recommendations, discussed risk mitigation strategies, and identified cross-functional implementation issues. Iknow introduced relevant improvement ideas from other organizations to help guide the working groups in developing their recommendations and performance improvement targets. More than 40 representatives from the organization’s key functions and region/country operations participated.

In the final phase of the project, Iknow developed a standard template to summarize the working groups’ recommendations, impact, and key implementation steps. Iknow also summarized the high-level themes for reporting to senior management and documented the supporting activities and technology platforms necessary to enable the process improvements. Some examples of the supporting activities included training, performance management, accountability, and decision making. The final recommendations were presented to the organization’s executive leadership and approved.


With Iknow’s guidance, the organization’s working groups generated over 35 significant process improvement recommendations. The improvements were projected to generate more than $10 million USD/year of cost savings. A few examples include:

  • Restructuring of the country-level planning and budgeting process to significantly reduce preparation and review time, while enhancing local accountability.
  • Rationalization of payroll procedures to eliminate large amounts of non-value-added time on a monthly basis.
  • Simplification of procedures for cash transfers to partners, reducing administrative workload while enhancing program monitoring and control.
  • Streamlined approaches to procurement of low-value/high-volume goods and services and bid solicitation, significantly reducing processing costs and wait times for supplies and services.
  • Multiple revisions to travel procedures, freeing up large amounts of administrative time and improving responsiveness.
  • Several process improvements aimed at reducing cycle times for recruitment.

Iknow worked with the organization’s senior management on the implementation planning. The planning activities included project governance, issue/risk management, success tracking, and the frequency of status updates and reporting.

Project Summary No.

SNAP Workflow Analysis and Process Management

Redesigning Core Business Processes to Improve Benefits Delivery

The Division of Social Services (DSS), within the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services, is directly responsible for administering Delaware’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), previously known as the Food Stamp Program.

In February 2016, 146,252 clients in 70,728 households were receiving SNAP benefits. This represents roughly 16% of the State's population.


Iknow used three primary methodologies on this assignment.

  • Business Process Mapping. The objective of process mapping is to graphically illustrate the sequence of activities and tasks in a business process. We used the IDEF0 process mapping standard so that we could have a consistent way to display and interpret the processes. Iknow created more than 50 maps that covered the six core processes and one common subprocess. More than 220 individual process steps were characterized; maps with up to four levels of process decomposition were created.
  • Value Stream Mapping (VSM). The objective of value stream mapping is to graphically illustrate “where” and “how much” important process metrics change in the process. For example, if an important metric is processing time, then the value stream map would show where processing time accrues throughout the process. If the important process metric is defects, then the value stream map would show where defects are occurring throughout the process. Iknow constructed 24 VSM maps for the DSS.
  • Improvement Project Portfolio Evaluation and Optimization. The objective of creating a portfolio of improvement projects is to provide a structured approach for evaluating the improvement ideas that surface throughout the project. Each project is evaluated uniformly against a common set of criteria, such as return on investment, implementation speed, likelihood of success, and level of impact on certain groups of stakeholders.

More than 60 individual and group meetings were held. Business process mapping provided the following insights:

  1. The core business processes varied significantly in terms of number of discrete, meaningful steps, from as few as 5 steps to as many as 58 steps. The Intake Process and the Annual Renewal Process were the most complicated processes based on the number of process steps.
  2. The processes were primarily performed in serial; not many process activities were performed in parallel. Additionally, the number of handoffs between DSS staff was small, indicating a minimal number of process loops.

An example of a process flow map is illustrated in the exhibit below.

Process Flow Map - Intake Process (Top Level)

Process flow map for the Intake Process (Top Level).

Value stream mapping provided the following insights:

  1. Process lead times were highly variable and ranged from 4 days to 63 days across the 22 representative cases analyzed that covered the Intake, Periodic Report, and Annual Renewal processes. Process lead times ranged between 7 and 29 days.
  2. Process lead times were longer when the case’s supporting documentation was missing and worker follow-up was needed to complete the case. Requesting supporting documentation from a client and the additional processing tasks added roughly 14 calendar days to the overall process lead time.
  3. Based on an analysis of the processes, long process lead times were NOT correlated to case complexity.
  4. The value-added times ranged between 8 minutes and 2 hours per case processed.

An example of a Value Stream Map is illustrated in the exhibit below.

Value Stream Map - Annual Renewal Process

An example of a Value Stream Map for the Annual Renewal Process.

Iknow produced the following primary deliverables:

  • Current-state business process maps and VSM analysis
  • Future-state design
  • Portfolio of performance improvement ideas
  • Recommendations
  • Process improvement plan and roadmap

The DSS immediately began implementing the improvement roadmap.

Project Summary No.

Voice-of-the-Customer Analysis and Net Promoter Score

Analyzing Customer Feedback at a Global Sports Apparel Company

A large sports apparel and footwear manufacturer was collecting more than one million customer responses per month. The company asked customers their opinions about the products and services in nearly every transaction. Feedback, in the form of structured data and unstructured, verbatim text comments, was captured from the company’s website, in-store surveys, call centers, and e-mail surveys.


Iknow began this assignment by reviewing a representative data subset and developing the categories for classifying the comments. Working with the company’s marketing, digital commerce, and business intelligence staff, more than 130 categories were ultimately selected. Next, the Analyze learn-by-example (LBE) capability was used to automate the processing of text comments. The software is able to read and analyze each sentence, determine its meaning and sentiment, and classify it into one of the defined categories.

Iknow worked with the company to test and validate the results from the automated classification and to establish the internal reporting process. Results were routed to specific executives throughout the company so that they could address the problems that fell within their spans of control.


This project implemented an ongoing process for collecting, analyzing, and acting on voice-of-the-customer data and for calculating the Net Promoter Score. Prior to this project, the company read and responded to only a fraction of the feedback that it collected and its Net Promoter Score was calculated using only a small data sample. Now, the company electronically reads and reports on 100 percent of the customer comments and feedback it receives.

The apparel company achieved significant improvements across its business operations by closing the feedback loop between its customers and the internal departments and functions that interact with these customers.

Project Summary No.

Supplier Intelligence

Implementing Digital Dashboards to Improve Global Supply Chain Management

A major American defense contractor and industrial corporation was having difficulty responding to supply chain disruptions. With tens of thousands of suppliers located around the world, a significant event at any one of their suppliers’ manufacturing facilities, such as a strike, a major electrical outage, or an earthquake, could have a negative impact on the delivery of a major radar project or missile system.


The project consisted of the following six major work activities:

  1. Content Source Analysis. Iknow worked with company’s Supply Chain Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to identify the specific types of information that should be collected and displayed, and the specific sources of that information. Iknow synthesized the information and created a data element-data source map. Iknow evaluated alternate sources and prepared recommendations on the specific external sources of information that should be acquired for the SI Platform.

Iknow developed standard data element-naming conventions and definitions to assist in aggregating data from multiple sources. Iknow also created business logic for resolving conflicting data.

  1. Supplier Master Index (Key) and the Data Workflow and Processing Algorithms. Iknow developed a master key/indexing strategy for uniquely identifying each potential supplier. We created a relational database that integrated the company’s internal supplier naming conventions, D&B® D-U-N-S® Numbers, official company names, North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) industry codes, and the names of product categories and commodity types. Iknow then designed the end-to-end process workflow for data acquisition, cleansing, matching, and disambiguation.

Note: This work stream was very important because each new piece of incoming data needed to be matched correctly to a unique company. While D-U-N-S Numbers are used to uniquely identify more than 100 million businesses worldwide, we estimated that up to 30 percent of the potential suppliers in the company’s SI database that are located outside the United States did not have a D-U-N-S Number. Additionally, NAICS codes are likely only available for companies operating in North America. Therefore, creating and updating a supplier master index and the supporting logic algorithms to resolve matches of companies with similar names was fundamental to the overall integrity of the system.

  1. Intelligent Search (IS) Broker Creation. Iknow created the custom software code for acquiring the supplier data from the external sources. Iknow used the SAP BusinessObjects Intelligent Search product and built custom software brokers to access the specific websites and databases.
  2. Text Analysis Rule Creation. Iknow developed a set of custom rules for the SAP BusinessObjects Text Analysis product. The custom rules are used to finely tune the natural language processing (NLP) algorithms so that only the desired entities, or data elements, are extracted and stored during the processing of incoming, unstructured text content.
  3. User Experience Design and Development. Iknow developed high quality, user-friendly interfaces for the Supplier Intelligence application. The interfaces were web-based, multipage displays that contained advanced functionality for searching and displaying structured and unstructured data. Iknow designed the search, advanced search, faceted navigation of search results, and other search-related functionality. Iknow developed several display dashboards that present supply chain-related data in pie charts, bar charts, time-series plots, maps, and other display formats.
  4. Business Logic and Technical Architectures. Iknow designed, developed, and tested the new Supplier Intelligence Platform following the company’s DoD-certified software development methodology. The Platform was implemented using a services oriented architecture (SOA). Core technical functionality and business logic included scheduling the raw data acquisition, performing data quality and data reconciliation activities, and loading the data into structured databases. Iknow also designed and developed an overall user experience that fosters interaction with an exploration of the data and provides the mechanisms for collecting human intelligence and other forms of feedback.

The Supplier Intelligence platform was implemented using the following software tools from SAP:

  • SAP BusinessObjects Intelligent Search Language Processing
  • SAP Business Objects Text Analysis (language: English)
  • Text Analysis Language Processing (all other languages)
  • SAP BusinessObjects DQM
  • SAP BusinessObjects BI Package
  • SAP Business Suite Business Expert Upgrade User
  • SAP NetWeaver Enterprise Search
  • SAP Portal

Other commercial, off-the-shelf (COTS) software products included Oracle databases and SAP ERP systems. The production system is hosted in the company’s secure data centers. The Platform and the supporting databases are accessible behind the company’s firewall.

*          *          *

Some of the project’s major deliverables included:

  • Software installation in development, testing, and production environments
  • Business requirements document
  • Functional requirements document
  • UI design and implementation
  • Database design and implementation
  • Custom Intelligent Search brokers for each of the content source websites
  • Custom rules for Text Analysis entity extraction
  • Database application for managing the supplier websites
  • QA and UA testing
  • Training (end user training; technical training)
  • Periodic status reports

The exhibit below shows a screen shot of the top of a Company Profile page. It contains general company data, a vendor profile, the primary address, and 12-month purchase order commitments.

Screenshot of a Supplier Profile Page (Top)

Representative screen shot of a vendor Profile Page (Top).

The second exhibit shows additional information presented further down on the Company Profile page. This screen shot includes primary competitors and a complete list of human intelligence about the specific vendor.

Screenshot of a Supplier Profile Page (Bottom)

Representative screen shot of a vendor Profle Page (Bottom).

The third exhibit shows NAICS Codes, US and UK SIC Codes, and Hoovers Industry Codes for the vendor.

Screenshot of a Supplier Capabilities Page

Representative screen shot of a vendor Capabilities Page.


This major defense contractor received a supplier intelligence system that provides real-time news and information about every company in its global supplier database, as well as news and information on any potential supplier. Any type of information, from an earnings release, a change in senior management, or an unexpected weather event, is presented to the appropriate internal analyst for review. This new capability is considered to be an indispensable element in mitigating supply chain risk.

Information about suppliers is obtained from many external content sources, including:

  • Amadeus
  • Bloomberg
  • Corp Tech
  • Data Monitor
  • Defense and Aerospace Competitive Intelligence Service (DACIS)
  • Directory of Corporate Affiliations
  • Dow Jones Factiva
  • Dun & Bradstreet International (DNBi)
  • Epicos
  • Google
  • Government Contracts Won
  • Hoovers
  • Janes
  • LinkedIn
  • Mergent Online
  • Panjiva
  • System for Award Management (SAM)
Project Summary No.

Analytics and Big Data

We live in an era of data overload. The volume, rate, and variety of data types and formats, coupled with the speed with which it can be accessed and searched, put incredible amounts of useful information at our fingertips. Data sets are growing in size, in part, because of the wide array of information-collection devices, such as mobile phones, software logs, cameras, radio-frequency identification (RFID) readers, and wireless sensor networks.

Using this information in a business context is a challenge. We typically break the problem down into three phases.

Business Value

Careful analysis of large data sets can uncover new and unexpected correlations. Better decisions based on these insights can yield greater operational efficiencies, better resource allocation, lower costs, and reduced risk.


Iknow's deliverables can include:

  • Big data strategy
  • Data source identification, procurement, and integration
  • Big data pilots and prototypes
  • Analysis of complex data sets.

Knowledge-Enabled Process Design

Organizations create value through the successful execution of their core business processes. Business strategy dictates which business processes are key. Some companies choose to compete on cost so they focus on supply chain and operational efficiencies. Others compete on service, so responsive customer care is essential. In all cases, repeatable core business processes is what creates value.

Business Value

Taking a company’s knowledge management processes and rebuilding them from the ground up can create substantial improvements in information sharing, team-building, and business value.


Iknow’s deliverables often include:

  • Business process maps and decision logic
  • Analysis of process-related data and information sources
  • Process redesign recommendations
  • Future-state process redesign
  • Business process prototypes and pilots
  • Design, development, and implementation of supporting knowledge-enabling technologies
  • Business process policies, procedures, and related documentation.