The LavaCon Content Strategy Conference | 27–30 October 2024 | Portland, OR
Guillermo Galdamez

Guillermo is a Principal Consultant at Enterprise Knowledge, specializing in the Knowledge Management Strategy, Taxonomy Design, and Content Strategy initiatives at organizations as diverse as the US federal government, Fortune 500 companies, NGOs, and International Organizations across the Americas, Europe and Asia. He holds a Masters in Library and Information Studies from McGill University.

Out of Many, One: Building a Semantic Layer to Tear Down Knowledge Silos

Co-presented with: Nina Spoelker

Valuable knowledge is locked away within multiple silos in organizations – scattered across myriad systems, hoarded by individuals, and sometimes even forgotten by the organization. Curating, connecting, contextualizing, and delivering the right content to the right people at the right time can advance organizational efficiencies, nurture innovation, facilitate decision-making, accelerate the adoption of AI, and bring tangible business value to organizations.
As knowledge management consultants for the world’s largest dedicated KM services firm, Guillermo and Nina have been helping organizations unlock their knowledge and maximize the value they obtain from capturing it as content, curating it, and sharing it with the right people. In this talk, Guillermo and Nina will provide practical, proven guidance on how to break down knowledge silos using a semantic layer and streamlining the delivery of content. Speakers will illustrate the approach using various real life examples, including an investment firm grappling with sprawling content in the form of unstructured documents and disparate data across multiple repositories, a trade association seeking to provide a cohesive digital experience to its members, and one of the world’s top retailers streamlining the assembly of learning experiences, among others.
The session will set the stage by exploring the problem space: diving into the conditions that lead to the proliferation of knowledge silos within organizations, and their resulting impact on operations and business costs.
Guillermo and Nina will proceed to provide an overview of what a semantic layer is: what it does, its benefits, business value, and enterprise applications and  use cases. Once they establish this baseline understanding, the presenters will explain the components of the semantic layer, and how they enrich and enhance users’ content experiences to overcome the common challenges that organizations face in setting up their knowledge bases. Independent of their level of technical expertise, the dissection of the semantic layer will help attendees understand each of the underlying technologies, the associated skills needed to set them up, and how to orchestrate them to streamline content delivery to users.
Guillermo and Nina will then guide participants through a proven approach to implement the semantic layer, emphasizing the benefits of Agile, user-centered approaches to ensure the successful deployment of a semantic layer. They will again illustrate the approach using real-world examples, and the tips and lessons learned throughout the implementation process.
The session will conclude with a Q&A session to address any inquiries from participants.

In this session, attendees will learn:

  • Identify knowledge silos, understand their origins, and measure their impact on business
  • What is a Semantic Layer and the elements that make it up
  • How to define and prioritize use cases
  • How to assemble a roadmap for putting together a semantic layer to achieve your outcomes
  • Identifying common pitfalls and risks, and approaches for mitigating them
  • Receive practical advice on how to overcome the inertia of maintaining the content status quo
  • Define KPIs and ROI for the semantic layer