As an organization, how do you decide which knowledge sharing technique is the best for your employees and clients?
Company knowledge and insights are an important part of the knowledge management system of an organization.
Often, companies do not realize that this knowledge sharing is not exactly taking place in a way that is useful for anybody, be it the employees or the clients.
This is where a platform like Bloomfire stepped in to completely transform the way employees and customers engage and interact with the knowledge and information shared by a company. In this Bloomfire review, we will discuss how Bloomfire prides itself as one of the world’s first knowledge engagement platform.
The seed for the development of a platform like Bloomfire was planted in the Founder, Josh Little’s, mind at the time of presenting a product where he faced a challenging question. The founder realized the need for recording and sharing information and knowledge to answer this question. He then came up with a way to find and share company information in the easiest and most accessible way.
Table of Content
What is Bloomfire?
In one line, Bloomfire is a knowledge engagement and content management platform. If we were to go into a bit more details regarding Bloomfire, then:
- This platform allows businesses to share information with their employees, customers, and clients and also supports any kind of collaboration between these parties.
- The platform offers them space where they can engage with others transparently which in turn helps the company’s profitability and development.
- This platform manages to capture, archive, and expand the existing knowledge of the company by creating an open knowledge base that is easy to use and helps immensely in offering great customer support.
- In addition to this, the knowledge engagement platform is also capable of recording and transferring information or knowledge. This is done by the way of providing data that can help you achieve your tasks and goals.
The aim of Bloomfire, a cloud-based collaboration platform, is to offer support to employees at any organization who are in search of information that is relevant to get their job done. It is a space that brings together people and the information that they are so eagerly searching for.
Bloomfire is an extremely useful web application for organizations to deliver both social collaboration and content management features through the help of a knowledge management system. Any organization making use of Bloomfire can receive all the required support for setting up, optimizing, and managing their communities.
Best Used For
Elevating Customer Service:
You will agree with me when I say providing excellent customer service is something each business and organization strives for and works toward.
But above all, customer center employees are heavily relied on for delivering great customer service. Each customer service associate is given a certain responsibility and is expected to give the best solutions to their clients. The process is all about creating an experience the customers feel good about the “WOW” experience.
This requires customer service associates to have access to the right tools and information that is primary and immediate to the customers. Several different platforms have been used to record and store customer service information in the past, but none of them have been as efficient as Bloomfire.
The primary reason that Bloomfire came out as a winner in that race is that the associates had to struggle a lot just to find the right information they needed at the time of assisting their customers.
Bloomfire tries to elevate customer experience, but the platform often requires constant adjustments in the editing and viewing that can make daily operations lengthy and difficult. When something like this occurs, a platform can lose its intuitiveness and ease of use it promises to offer.It also doesn’t offer a way of downloading content or information on devices like an iPad Pro. This is where a lot of Bloomfire users have expressed a problem of not being able to use the platform or not able to download content.
Empowering Data-Driven Decision:
Insights team in an organization is always on the lookout for better ways to share knowledge with different teams. Bloomfire becomes that platform that they can use to allow people to seek and find information as easily as they find something on Google.
The platform tries to make searching information uncomplicated by searching within documents. This also improves the process of curating research, incorporating ideas, and assisting employees to learn quickly. The platform manages to do this by aligning the five guiding principles of knowledge management.
Increasing Collaboration & Aligning Teams:
Bloomfire has helped many small and large-sized organizations in breaking the high internal walls that had been created among different departments and making employees feel more comfortable while collaborating.
Bloomfire offered an intuitive platform and approach for allowing all users to create and publish content quickly. The platform has the depth of information extraction that other platforms didn’t offer. This also offers better insights into knowledge engagement metrics.
Team members who are a part of different teams often complained about how they were unable to share an article or a post to a different group. Bloomfire doesn’t offer the ease of sharing the same article or information to different groups or teams from one place. The entire process of sharing needs to be done all over again for a new group. Users have also been confused about what groups they were posting their content.
This is a feature that is better offered and managed by The Cloud Tutorial in the form of importing files in-between categories. You can simply select the file and easily move it from one category or subcategory to another.
Decreasing Onboarding Time:
The demand for accurate information is higher than ever. Inaccurate information not only leads to errors but also significantly impacts the company’s image and productivity. All other methods of recording and storing information and knowledge seemed to not function well enough for associates in the form of outdated information and difficulty to navigate.
Bloomfire offers customization options so that clients are provided with answers easily by first making it easy to use for the customer support team. Bloomfire also offered an opportunity for companies to create communities on the platform so that any updates or new information is shared easily with the particular community.
Keeping associates informed and engaged is also often a task for companies. Policies and regulations are updated every once in a while and these need to be referred to with ease. Bloomfire has built-in reporting that can offer insights into how a community interacts with content while at the same time keeping them accountable for being in touch with the information source.
Even after diverting all the company information in one place and any specific information is allowed to be searched, there is no ease of search that offers. When your navigation becomes difficult, no matter how much information you try to provide, it will not reach your users.
The user interface and the search feature of Bloomfire is still something that lags and users have only been more confused due to it. Bloomfire aimed at providing faster solutions with improved onboarding time. But after cutting downtime in onboarding, users and employees often end up wasting their time going through the confusing navigation of the platform. This brings them back to square one.
Can Help With Training and Technical Support:
Bloomfire is used to help employees who are under training. This is done through assignments, ways to connect and share their best practices. Bloomfire has helped in laying the groundwork for training employees in many small and large corporations.
This platform allows them to connect financial advisors who are located across the country. It helps them stay connected and feel a sense of community. The advisors and training staff can upload videos about how to perform certain tasks or showcase certain skills. There is also a way to get feedback from the coaches. The time in the training classrooms becomes more effective with the help of this education management system.
It is a platform that makes training and technical support easier, but it proves to be a slightly costly option when compared to other platforms that can do the same thing at a much lower price.
There are many free apps and platforms as well that companies are already using for training and technical support purposes internally, so having to pay such a high cost for a feature like this becomes difficult to justify to the higher management.
With employees and clients all working and communicating from different parts of the world, organizations need a platform that can be used to share information efficiently and centralize the knowledge management system while keeping it secure. If this is not done, it can severely affect the service delivery and the level of care that organizations try so hard to achieve.
Even after being a good knowledge management solution, Bloomfire has issues where users are often unable to find an older article or post which becomes very difficult to access certain information. Users feel that a certain alphabetical or chronological order would have made things easier to look for.
Bloomfire is a good platform in such a situation because it gives people a place to collaborate, find useful resources, and ask questions that are important for their job. But how easily a user can go through the knowledge source is also extremely important and this is something Bloomfire misses.
Offers Knowledge to Workers:
Each organization has a published knowledge base of procedures, manuals, and policies to help out the associates and workers in doing their jobs safely and with efficiency. Often, field workers, in this case, do not have enough access or ease of use of these manuals and procedures that are usually in word documents, pdfs, and excel sheets.
A field is a place where a lot of technical and critical knowledge is being used, and it needs to be accessed quickly. Bloomfire has been used in organizations as a platform to provide employees with training and making sure they are maintaining all the safety protocols on the field.
Being a knowledge base for all workers, be it in the office or the field, Bloomfire still struggles with offering their users ease of navigation through the app. Many users have faced this issue where they found the search and navigation to be quite challenging. The user also felt that having a web interface for desktop browsers would have been much more suitable and made things easier for them.
According to Capterra, the company was founded in 2010 and with its headquarters in Austin, Texas. Bloomfire is a cloud-based collaboration platform that helps with insights and knowledge sharing. This platform helps leading organizations and corporations in centralizing and regulating all the important knowledge from across the organization. The content management and social collaboration features of Bloomfire helps enterprise employees connect and search for the information they require to do their jobs.
Capterra has a list of other detailed user reviews and product details. As a review source, Capterra is one of the most reliable ones. According to the user ratings, the Bloomfire review is favored for its free trial, ease of use, supporting a large company size, and great customer support.
In addition to this, Bloomfire helps in finding and following internal experts, browsing useful content, creating and posting content, and asking questions and seeking answers for them. Bloomfire is a platform that can support various kinds of content types like video, PowerPoint Presentations, PDF files, screengrabs, and images, and documents.
Moreover, the platform is easy to use on mobile devices. It can be used by companies both large and small ranging from real estate to IT, healthcare, and education. Organizations can customize Bloomfire according to their brand requirements, create categories, and sub-categories. Teams and clients can receive support for setting up and maintaining their communities.
Bloomfire supports devices that are web-based, desktop, iOS, and Android and can be used for small and medium businesses and enterprises that have an employee strength of 201-500 employees. Support technicians for Bloomfire are available through phone and online as well. Bloomfire also offers integrations to Box, Office 360, Sharepoint, Dropbox, and Salesforce.
If there is something common in most Bloomfire reviews, it is the cost that is a bit problematic. But Bloomfire offers a free trial for up to 2 weeks for each of its plans. A free trial helps know whether a platform is of good use and can be utilized for the purposes you need it for.
Bloomfire aims at making your company’s information available and accessible from anywhere. This way it allows your teams to be aligned, informed, and constantly engaged. It does this by eradicating information hierarchies while allowing everyone to access the same information. The department, location, or role doesn’t matter here.
With the help of this feature, you can get all the information you need much faster, so you can invest the same time in other tasks. Expertise and tacit knowledge are preserved and all the important information is not just limited to one person.
For a company, Bloomfire can be the single source of truth and knowledge, this makes it easy for users to find what they are looking for. Users can have a personalized feed and follow authors, pages, search terms, posts, etc. There are a bunch of curation tools for identifying duplicate content and scheduling content reviews.
A company can use Bloomfire as a searchable, easily accessible research library. It increases ROI by making it easy for employees to discover something with a simple keyword search. When you focus on research, you can make better decisions and witness growth.
The insights team report is the best source for researching topics and questions and eliminating any duplicate research being done. Users can not only search their primary research but also have access to third-party sources.
Your research portals can also be expanded by making your vendors submit their reports in one place for you to review and publish. Bloomfire’s technology allows all employees to find insights that they require to make better decisions, no matter where they are placed.
Bloomfire can be that one easy-to-access place for a company looking to make their agents more capable of resolving issues accurately. Your team can search answers for the customer questions more quickly with the help of user-friendly features and search functionality.
Users of this system can get up to speed and easily set up remote learning opportunities with all the useful assets like training materials, playbooks, and FAQs. This platform can also be a self-service knowledge source for users and reduce the number of tickets for the employees.
Bloomfire features an easy to use knowledge source for version control, scheduling review reminders to make sure only trustworthy and up-to-date knowledge reaches people. You can update the source of knowledge as and when your customer base increases, making it a delightful experience for all your customers.
- Empower everyone:Bloomfire empowers everyone in the company by allowing them to contribute and access the knowledge source. When employees and teams are empowered, they become more efficient and the quality of the work also improves.
- Creating posts:The way you can create and share the posts and articles is extremely easy. Creating posts becomes a fun way to share content and knowledge for the users.
- Community Features: The community features such as commenting and liking are really important to make the users feel like they belong to a community. Each review is filled with praise for the community feature of the platform.
- Easy to use:Adding more ease of use to the searching for knowledge and day-to-day activities linked to this knowledge. All the information made available on the platform is easy to use and easy to update for all the users. With the ease of use, people can get a lot of things done. Any review of the platform will have mentioned this feature as a positive aspect.
- Challenging navigation:Users often find search and navigation to be quite challenging. The navigation is designed as a one-size-fits-all system and that is not very convenient. It would be much preferable to have a web interface for desktop browsers.
- Difficult to find an older post:Finding an older article, post, or source becomes much more difficult. There is no proper listing of the articles, be it in chronological order or alphabetical order. Users often feel that having a certain order and being able to choose in what order you want to view your articles or posts will offer ease of use to them.
- Requiring clunky HTML tools:Some of the features require you to take the help of some clunky HTML tools to start making use of them. It proves to be quite inconvenient for the developers as well as the users of the platform.
- Reduced size of the article:With the recent update to the user interface, the size of the article is reduced to ⅓ of the page, which makes it difficult to read any tables of embedded documents. Decent screen size for the articles will make it easier to refer to the article while also being able to make sense of any other additional documents attached to it.
- Not able to share posts from one place:Bloomfire cannot also be able to share posts to different communities from the same spot. Instead, it requires users to post the same content all over again if they want to share it with different communities, using different categories and tags each time.
- Not good value for money: The cost model of the platform changed drastically after a point. It changed from unlimited to a limited number of users. For a company, the cost of such a platform is forbidding. Other platforms are offering maybe more than just content sharing for a similar or lower price. This is not good value for money for a platform like Bloomfire. Value for money is one of the most important points that a company looks for when they start to use a platform or software.
- The overall cost: It becomes quite difficult to convince upper management that the features match the cost being charged for the platform when other platforms are offering a similar service at a much cheaper cost. Many reviews about Bloomfire have the cost feature as a negative point about the platform.
The Bloomfire pricing is typically per user per month. It can also depend on other implementations and services that you might require later. The price per user is said to go down as the number of users for the platform increases. For up to 50 users, the price per year starts from $15,000. All the agreements made with the platform are paid annually or multi-year for 1-3 years.
There are two pricing plans: Basic and Enterprise. The Basic plan has all the standard features like community, AI-driven search and suggestion, auto-tagging content, unlimited storage, and standard support. While the Enterprise plan goes beyond and offers additional features like multiple communities, API access, News Hub, Whitelabel URL, ZenDesk Integration, Public content, Salesforce Integration, Microsoft Teams Integration.
In short, the pricing of the product is quite high when compared to the offered features and functionalities. Due to this reason, many startups, companies, and enterprises looking for an alternative to Bloomfire.
Is There a Better Alternative?
After going through the pros and cons of Bloomfire based on the reviews, you must be wondering what if you are looking for a better alternative to the solution of knowledge and content sharing that can also offer value for money. Not only this but it also helps in achieving your employees’ industry standards while maintaining the source of the knowledge and being better with the sales system.
The Cloud Tutorial is an easy-to-use platform that is simplified for your users, so they can find the information they need. A company can create a user-friendly FAQ site, offer quick solutions to their customers, with the best search results, and also customize your help center depending on the industry you are working in.
The Cloud Tutorial offers a user-intuitive FAQ built in your application with the help of a knowledge base, so the customers can get precise answers to all their questions without having to sit through long calls or read long emails. It is really important to know what users are looking for in your app to offer them the best user experience.
It also helps you decide which features to optimize. Having an AI-powered FAQ section in the app will decrease the number of emails. It will save you time and energy while letting you focus on more pressing matters.
Compared to Bloomfire pricing plans, The Cloud Tutorial has more options or plans to choose from. The starting price is at $0 per month for just one member, but you only get access to 1 site, 25 articles, and 1 domain. The actual starting price then becomes $14.99 per month for 5 team members, 2 sites, and 250 articles.
You have the option of removing The Cloud Tutorial branding for all the paid plans. The other plans are Gold which is for $49.99 per month, while the Plus plan is for $99.99 per month. When compared to a platform like Bloomfire that offers similar services, The Cloud Tutorial platform offers more value for money and serves the same company size that Bloomfire does. The Cloud Tutorial possesses the same pros I love in Bloomfire, for a better price.
A platform like Bloomfire would only be useful if you have a large corporation with a long list of members, but a platform like The Cloud Tutorial can be useful for a team as small as 5 members to an organization that extends up to 51-200 employees. It serves a large variety of organizations ranging from marketing and advertising, financial services, management consulting, information technology, etc.
With this, we would like to conclude our findings of how Bloomfire provides many helpful features to different organizations and corporations. Along with the pros, it also has a bunch of cons that cannot be dismissed.
In such a situation, we always have good alternatives around us, and in this case, The Cloud Tutorial is that alternative for us. While Bloomfire is mostly used in companies in the United States, the Cloud Tutorial has users all around the world.