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Expertise assessment based on user-to-user proximity over time Disclosure Number: IPCOM000237846D
Publication Date: 2014-Jul-16
Document File: 2 page(s) / 45K

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The Prior Art Database


Disclosed is a method to identify subject matter expertise as it is gained over time. The system monitors and logs components of working relationships between users to identify users that have enough knowledge to act as a secondary Subject Matter Expert (SME) when the primary SME is unavailable to provide support.

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Expertise assessment based on user-to-user proximity over time

Members of a development team or other organization are often unable to find available subject matter experts (SMEs). If an organization has a limited number of SMEs, such individuals might not have enough time to work on every task that requires specific expertise.

Other individuals might have knowledge similar to that of an SME, because those people work closely with (i.e., in close proximity to or by attending the same meetings, etc.) the SME; however, that individual is not explicitly tagged as an SME in that area.

A method is needed to identify people with similar knowledge to an SME and make

them accessible for support when needed.

The solution is a method to identify expertise over time. One of the key factors is the

working proximity of a secondary expert to the primary SME. The system works on the premise that the secondary expert gains knowledge from the primary SME because of close working conditions. The location of a user, or the relative location of a user, can be used to estimate expertise over a given period.

The core idea is a system that can monitor and log relationships over time to determine the level of understanding of a subject one user might develop from another. So, even though User A is a System X expert, the system can determine based on shared meetings and business relationships that, over time, User A must have absorbed at least some of the knowledge of System Y from a colleague in a close environment.

User A's location and relationship to User B provides the system a good understanding of User A's level of knowledge. Thus:

1. User A works with System X 2. User A sits at a work station beside User B 3. User B works on System Y 4. User C wants to know about System Y, but User B is not available 5. The invented system directs User C to User A, because User A (secondary expert) has gained knowledge from User B (primary SME for System Y)

In an example problem:

1. User C works for Sales in London 2. User A and User B work in Dublin 3. User C is at a customer site and needs an urgent answer from User B, but User B is offline 4. In this situation User C must find User B's manager to look for assistance 5. The Company database shows that User B is the SME for, DC and there is no backup.

There would be g...