What Our Clients Are Saying
"As an outcome of our strategic planning process, a key external goal was to have our clients perceive us as the knowledge-based practice we knew we were. As we assessed our internal knowledge sharing infrastructure, we realized that as our firm grew, we had cobbled together an in-house solution—workarounds really—but it was not nearly robust enough to support external knowledge sharing in a meaningful way. As we looked at ways to improve our knowledge sharing infrastructure, we were fortunate enough have identified Synthesis.
The impact Synthesis has had on our practice has been remarkable. We not only achieved our goal of sharing information across 5 offices, and at all staff levels, but with the added benefit of integrating our knowledge sharing site with our Deltek Vision and OpenAsset applications, it makes the investment in Synthesis the best dollars we have spent in a long time. Every once in a while an application comes along that you just can’t do without, for Array Synthesis has achieved that stature in a short 6 months! We have seen a significant change in the culture of our staff as it relates to sharing across project teams and offices, which has set us up beautifully to begin to share knowledge externally."
Array Healthcare Facilities Solutions
"We (at SGH) had developed a handful of important tools to provide online access to our marketing materials and business development information, but were missing the logical bridge to bring it together. We were actively seeking a solution when we learned what KA does. Moving forward with you was an obvious choice to solve an obvious need.
In addition to providing a much-improved user interface for our marketing group, we were pleasantly surprised to see how quickly we were up and running. We signed on in July and were fully implemented in early October. Considering the various parts we integrated and that we did a company-wide rollout, the rapid process was amazing; and we appreciated the level of facilitation you provided.
Professional services companies are all facing the same information management and delivery challenges. KA is right on top of providing excellent solutions built on top of the most common databases and software packages that we like to use in our industries. You are doing it right and doing exactly what people need."
Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc.
"We took what we had in Vision and pulled it into our intranet, so when someone looked up information, the intranet showed the holes -- and they had never seen the holes before.
All of a sudden, they were asking, How come this company -- I know that the architect on this project was so and so -- why isn't that in there?
The management and staff all agreed, Let's get these holes filled! It really helped us, and it's what prompted us to hire a content development person. The intranet helped them to see what was missing, and it also helped them to see how much information we did have that they didn't think we had.
Our technical staff had become frustrated because they thought they had no ability to find the company's information, and marketing was keeping it hidden. Now they can see that they don't need to come to us. It is right there on the intranet. The staff uses it often and loves it."
Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc.
"One of your big selling points for us was your single source of truth comment. It's critical. Making one database the database, and having the integration through Synthesis means that we can give access to information that lives in Vision without having to go to Vision.
So we were kinda like, Holy cow, that's perfect. We had a homegrown intranet that needed to be replaced.
Upgrading the intranet was a priority project that could never get done. It was something that everybody wanted. We needed it done, it was on the list, but we could never assign a resource to it. And we could never get a consensus. Half the challenge was agreeing on what it should be in the first place.
So when we saw what you had, it was, Wow, that fills most of the gaps that we're looking to fill anyway...
And it's off the shelf. And it's reasonable. Then we brought it to our CEO, COO, Finance Director, a few other people, and they said, Let's do it.
The intranet and the integration components are something we could never have done ourselves without going out and hiring developers and DBAs. You're allowing us to focus so that we don't have to spend a lot of time saying, What should we do with the intranet?"
"We have nine offices now. Synthesis was huge when we purchased a new company recently. It was huge with getting them connected to us. Giving them access to the intranet. That's all we had to do and they immediately had access and felt connected to the entire company. 'Cause they've seen all the blogs, they've seen all the posts. They've had access to all the policies and procedures and projects and everything. "
"Having you guys plugged into the industry enables me to attach to a lot of different forums and groups and read lots of emails and blogs about what's going on in the industry. You guys are constantly saying, Hey, check this out, check that out. We might not be ready for it, or we might not be adopting it, but it does start the discussion."
"You guys helped me bridge the gap between knowing IT and not knowing A&E. Synthesis was a good tool to get me into those industry-specific systems and better understand our business."
"We've never had an intranet before. I've always envisioned it as a way of actively sharing our knowledge learned from projects, sharing about who we are and what we do, as well as integrating with our existing sets of key information. I wanted something that was simple to manage in an out of the box solution, so we did look at SharePoint and actually hired a consultant to lay out our first intranet. What we received was a typical intranet formed around their interpretation of our business activities and processes -- no integration with existing information -- just a static site for centrally storing information that would involve a good chunk of manual labor to extract from other systems.
And then when I saw your presentation, I was totally blown away because the integration was there with our entire existing information tool set -- Vision, OpenAsset, Newforma, etc. Those things seemed very difficult to do on my own, if I was going to integrate SharePoint by myself."
"You are thoughtful listeners. You give your insights, leveraging what you've learned with your research and your discussions and dealings with other clients. KA knows how we think and how we feel and provides thoughtful insight into what we should be doing to better our information and knowledge gathering and sharing.
When I work with vendors and consultants it is of primary importance to me that we have a trusting and solid relationship. When it comes down to relationship versus price, I'll always put relationship on top. It's not worth wheeling and dealing on price and then not getting the support or product you really want."
"Synthesis is like our global water cooler. Which is critical, because if you know someone it's a lot easier to work together and solve problems, to say, Okay, let's roll up our sleeves.
With Synthesis we get mistakes out there a lot quicker. We're not a big firm with a lot of structure and process from a training perspective. As we integrate with Vision, OpenAsset, and other areas, it hopefully makes us more efficient. It allows us to share, and the biggest thing is the idea of sharing and collaboration. At the end of the day, that's what makes us tick.
It's so simple, which is wonderful because it has to be easy for anyone in the firm to post and put something up....and that's the case with Synthesis. We have multiple offices. This is a great way to immediately get information onto the screens of your staff and communicate more efficiently. This last release has been the greatest release.
If you're committed to knowledge management and trying to push that forward in your firm, then there's probably not a better product out there."
"I instantly recognized that what you all were selling was essentially a very simple human system. I have seen software systems come and go. And fail. What I have believed over the years is that software will never succeed unless there is human energy and excitement behind it.
When I saw the presentation about Synthesis, for me it put a very simple, graphic, and approachable curtain in front of our more complex information systems. It provided a glimmer of hope that we could shift human behavior, because there are instant rewards and investment in the system. With the latest version of Synthesis, our participation level is at an all-time high."
"It is about culture change. It is also about knitting together our three offices. We know more about each other now, because of Synthesis, than we have since I can remember in my 16 years with the firm."
"When I hear that somebody's using Vision, I say, Oh do you use Newforma? And they say yes, and then it's like ding, ding, ding.
And I say, Do you have an intranet? and they'll say Yes, we have one. We started it five years ago, but nobody uses it, dah-dah-dah.
I say, You know, we have Synthesis. It was developed by this great company out in San Francisco, and they're completely and totally focused on knowledge management for the AEC industry. And it's the coolest thing. They've actually been able to knit together our Deltek Vision database, our Newforma database, and our image database, all into one interface, and that's our intranet.
They're like No way, you're serious? Are you kidding me? It's such an easy sell, Chris."
Hanbury Evans Wright Vlattas
"We had an intranet but it was just very difficult to maintain. We needed a solution that was fast to deploy, built on best practices, and leveraged our existing technology stack including Deltek Vision and an Image Library. We had heard from other firms that had done outside consulting and spent over six figures. So from a cost perspective, partnering with KA was a slam-dunk."
"The team at Knowledge Architecture understands the core business challenges we face. They take the time to listen to our objectives before offering the appropriate solutions. It's been a great relationship."
"Having employees spread across nine small offices makes communications a true challenge. In a consulting business, you're marketing knowledge, so it is really important that we share that knowledge across the firm. Delta has a strong culture that we're pretty proud of. Synthesis has given us a way to make it deeper, more felt by everybody, and at our fingertips.
We don't have to wait a month for a newsletter. We don't have to wait for a quarterly staff meeting. We can get fun news out simply, we can get important news out simply, and it speaks to us because we all travel so much.
We take the monthly newsletter and we dissect it to individual blog posts and we put them all out there on the intranet. I think that's really great. And we have the potential to do a lot more with Synthesis."
"We had a static intranet that needed help and attention. It needed somebody to love it. It felt like we were paddling upstream here internally and we needed a more efficient paddle. I think what closed the deal in our deciding to work with Knowledge Architecture was knowing that you were out there looking at a bunch of similarly minded companies and taking the best ideas from all of them. I liked that we would get those best ideas without having to reinvent the wheel."
"I think you can stop now because you are so far ahead of us. You know what I mean? KA is setting the pace way out in front. You need to stay ahead of us. I think you push us, you stretch us, and I think that's great. Stay there and we'll follow you."
Delta Airport Consultants
"We were trying to find a firm with the skillset that could help us develop an intranet that would function as a great management tool. We wanted someone that knew a lot about Vision and how to harvest some of the data that was really buried inside that database, data that's really difficult to gather and view.
We definitely didn't want to hire someone, to bring them on full-time, or even part-time. We don't have the budget for that, and don't really have the desire to go down that path. So it was a really easy choice to choose you guys to build our intranet. You guys are experts at weaving all these different tools together, and you present them in a way that's a lot more effective than any of the tools on their own."
"Synthesis has been important to Boulder Associates because we wanted to share our culture in amongst the firm. We feel like we're kind of losing our culture. We're splintering off as we continue to grow and open new offices. We want to make sure, especially as some of our founding fathers are expected to retire in the coming years, that they can start to pass on what our firm is all about. The fact is, we are committed to becoming a legacy firm. We don't want to be bought out. We want to make sure that the culture and the wisdom is shared amongst all our staff.
I think it's helped that our president was really active in posting throughout the year. That was one of his goals for 2011, and he wants to continue that throughout 2012. He realizes the potential of sharing and encourages everyone. It's critical to have top-down participation."
"It's great working with you guys. I mean, I feel like you're almost family. It's so easy, I think it's a good fit since we're all kind of very similar personalities. I think we work well together. You guys are all about customer service, like I am inside my firm. You don't let things slide. You're effective and timely. I really appreciate the relationship that we have built over the last couple of years."
"We are so pleased with our updated Intranet! I have been amazed at the number of people jumping in there and posting blogs. We even had an engineer say he loved it. I can't tell you how rare that is. We have hit a home run!"
"We were stuck on first base for far too long. Susan helped us move from first base to third base. Not only is she an incredibly efficient user of SharePoint, but her experience enabled us to unravel and organize some of our more challenging content. All-in-all a huge success!
Best money we ever spent."