Knowledge management (KM) is getting more attention these days for a variety of reasons and products such as MOSS 2007 are at the forefront of providing a KM solution from a technology perspective. The following information is based on studies done by reputable universities (Interviews and surveys with CIOs etc…):
What are the key drivers for KM?
  • Information technology progress – revolutionize the way information is processed and stored.
  • Communication technology, transportation and the new global economy – has increased the cognizance of KM as a core competency.
  • Clients level of sophistication and expectations – has significantly increased. There is less tolerance to inferior products and services.
  • Need to innovate technology and processes – has increased dramatically over the past decade. It is overwhelming evident that innovation is essential for growth and business survival.
  • KM is increasingly important because of the shift from predictable enterprise paradigms to one governed by discontinuous and often unpredictable change. A well structured KM system will help solve and alleviate the problems associated with its discontinuous and unpredictable change.
Understanding that KM has far reaching implications from an organizational (mostly) and technical perspective, the following are the top barriers to expect when implementing KM:
  • Organizational culture – 80%
  • Lack of ownership – 64%
  • Info/Comms technology – 55%
  • Non-standardized processes – 53%
  • Organizational structure – 54%
  • Top management commitment – 46%
  • Rewards/Recognition – 46%
  • Individual vice team emphasis – 45%
  • Staff turnover – 30%
Over the past 5-10 years, the need for KM has become more prevalent. The following table lists the top reasons why companies adopt KM:
  • Increase profits if revenue – 67%
  • Retain key talent and expertise – 54%
  • Improve customer service – 52%
  • Defend market share – 44%
  • Accelerate time to market – 39%
  • Penetrate new market segments – 39%
  • Reduce costs – 38%
  • Develop new products and services – 35%
So where should you foucs to get the most value? The following have been highlighted as the highest value areas of KM:
  • Proposal writing
  • Identification of best practices and processes
  • Generating an environment that stimulates innovation
  • Product and process planning and design
  • Identifying/understanding the market potential for existing products
  • Product or process management
  • Improving current products/services trough innovation
  • Product and process construction or build
  • Identifying enterprise strengths and weaknesses from a competitive perspective
  • Management decision making
  • Identifying and managing project risk
  • Identifying and understanding the competition
  • Planning and deployment of resources
The following have been highlighted as the most successful technologies in the enterprise for supporting KM (by rank):
  • Document management – 1
  • Data warehousing – 2
  • Groupware – 3
  • Extranet – 4
  • Decision support system – 5
  • Intranet – 6
  • Internet – 7
  • Artificial intelligence/knowledge agents – 8
Want to learn more? View my reading list for recommended books.