We build features based on customer requests and input and give customers a lot of ways to customize their knowledge bases to their needs.
KnowledgeOwl runs on its own profits, with no outside investment or interests. The only people we answer to are our customers (and the IRS).
We’re passionate about documentation and knowledge management
Chief Executive Owl
Broomfield, CO, United States
Chief Technical Owl
Broomfield, CO, United States
Head Professional Services Owl,
Community Builder, Chief Illustrator
& Resident Personality Typologist
Manchester, United Kingdom
Product & Customer Champion,
Midcoast Maine, United States
Master of Coin, Host of
The Not-Boring Tech Writer
Stuck in the Net, United States
& Seeker of Sounds
White Mountains, NH, United States
Pennsylvania, United States
Building better knowledge bases since 2011
KnowledgeOwl begins as a lean startup as part of SurveyGizmo, now Alchemer, a software company in Boulder, Colorado. The vision is to build HelpGizmo, a full help desk solution with ticketing. One of our founders, Marybeth, is a support manager at the time and part of the original HelpGizmo startup team.
While the startup program ends, the idea lives on.
As a surprise 20% project, the support development team revives HelpGizmo. They repurpose it as an internal knowledge base tool for the support team.
The stage is set for a product, and a company, built by customer support professionals.
The first customer, and the first source of feedback, is the docs team. They start using it for their customer-facing product documentation.
Marybeth takes over the product as the product manager, and hires Pete as the lead developer. Marybeth had originally hired Pete as part of her support team and he had worked his way onto the core development team. Their new vision is to bring HelpGizmo to market as stand-alone knowledge base software.
HelpGizmo gets it first paying customer in April. As they sign up, new customers help steer product development in the right direction.
Marybeth and Pete buy the company from SurveyGizmo and rebrand as KnowledgeOwl. Already profitable, the company chooses to remain bootstrapped and grow a sustainable business.
Business is growing, and both revenue and active customers triple. We start hosting and sponsoring Write the Docs Boulder/Denver meetups.
After making it to the Final Four as HelpGizmo in 2015, KnowledgeOwl beats out 63 other companies in the Capterra Reviews Madness Competition to become one of the top-reviewed products (and win a sweet trophy too!).
KnowledgeOwl makes its first official hire, a former customer and evangelist, Stephen! Stephen has recently moved from Australia to Scotland.
Customer count continues to increase and revenue doubles.
As KnowledgeOwl continues to grow, we are able to do fun new things:
We hire our first full-time support professional, Lakshmi from Estonia, to help lighten the load.
We begin sponsoring Write the Docs conferences, too!
Customer count and revenue continue to climb.
Marybeth, Pete, and Stephen start the year off with a bang with a mini-company trip to Disney World. Catherine and Marybeth meet up in May for Write the Docs Portland. The entire team of five meets in London and train hops through Europe for Write the Docs Prague.
We hire Kate, another former customer and evangelist, who just completed hiking the Appalachian Trail. She takes over from Lakshmi.
We're now GDPR compliant and Privacy Shield certified. We start offering an Enterprise plan and paid professional services.
We also branch out a bit and start sponsoring Jacob Moses’ The Not-Boring Tech Writer podcast. We love the title as well as Jacob’s excellent focus on issues that matter to a lot of our users.
We release a total rewrite of our search functionality, built on Elasticsearch.
Customer count mildly increases; enterprise and paid professional services increase revenues.
Again, we start the year off with a bang with a partial-company retreat to Disney World (Marybeth, Pete, Kate, and Stephen), where we meet Jerrard, who we hire later in the year to help with support and professional services.
We hire our first additional developer in March. Spicer is from Portland, Oregon, adding another time zone to our owl parliament’s reach.
Catherine, Kate, and Marybeth meet Spicer in person at Write the Docs Portland.
The Write the Docs community keeps on giving; Marybeth hires our first information security owl from a local Write the Docs meetup. (They prefer privacy, as security owls are wont to do, so you can call them OwlSec for short!)
With the 2019 hiring, our parliament is up to 8 owls. And we officially reorganize and retitle a little, with Kate taking over the support knowledge base, release notes, and a more formalized QA process and Stephen officially becoming the head of professional services.
This year sees exciting changes on the product side as well, including the release of three major new features:
Oh 2020, what a year you have been. We like to keep things positive, so let’s begin with the best part: we have our company retreat in Steamboat Springs with nearly the entire parliament present!
The year has seen some adjustments in some of our owls' roles, and some new faces added to the parliament:
It’s a year of important milestones for us as a company, too:
We consider ways that we can use KnowledgeOwl for Good, beyond the B Corp certification. This includes:
On the product side, the additional hiring has allowed us to focus on a number of great features, including:
We pride ourselves on helpful solutions and quick support turnaround
Need any help or just want to get in touch? Drop us a line