Thesis: Knowledge Management Systems Thesis Studio: Fall 2009 Amber Krishan | MFA DT
Domains & Precedents Knowledge management Wearable and computer vision technologies Competitive Advantage Imperative competitive Advantage Efficient information collection, processing & dispersion Embracing modern technologies Financial Consultancies
What is Knowledge Management? Information Collection from real world experiences Processing information into knowledge Contextual Knowledge Distribution ORGANIZATION WORLD
Knowledge Management at Ernst & Young Center of Business Knowledge (CBK) Center of Business Innovation (CBI) Center of Business Technology (CBT) Create new Knowledge Structure knowledge into methods and automated tools Gather and store both the firm’s acquired knowledge and external knowledge and information
Strategic growth markets
Knowledge management Challenges KM = Competitive Advantage
Raw Data collection
Lack of standardization
Processing raw data into knowledge
Large and complex knowledge base
Contextual Knowledge distribution
Ease of Access
Effectively leveraging knowledge to ensure success of future projects
Ability of the data to support/deny hypotheses
Key Question? How can knowledge be leverages across the organization ?
The Need Knowledge is stored in databases and archives! Users find it hard to familiarize to all of these. Corporate environment does not support or facilitate conversation, rather enforces technologies which create a social divide. Knowledge in all its granularity resides within the minds of the employees. Don’t make me search through archives! I just need to ask someone. I just don’t know who!
Early Concepts Wearable device scans the work environment to locate people with similar focus of work.
Early Concepts Name tag type devices swapping relevant information Device with knob type control to set focus of search to particular service lines
Understanding the life of consultant – Daily Life Model Typical Day at E&Y (for a typical manager) Reach workstation and switch on the PC/laptop Reach out to colleagues and typical morning greeting Read through the mail / scan through the list of thing to do Reach out to team and understand the overall plan of the day Address priority clients first and subsequently allocate the work amongst the team Keep the internal messenger on to reach out to team (outside locations) to administer progress During the day – connect on conference calls, video conferencing and attend meetings with the partner to appraise him of the progress Work on the deliverable through the day Evening – Follow up on the pending issues and try to adjust the timelines for deliverables
Understanding the life of consultant – What do they work on?
Credential Pack - Credential Pack for a specific industry to showcase the type of work and sectors/companies touched in past.
Proposals to Clients – for pitching new company and sectors
Client Deliverables – audit reports, tax reports and risk assessment reports (The medium of deliverable is generally a ppt, however it may be agreed to present in word)
Project Reports – which may consists of industry/company specific data along with the opinion and way forward by EY. It may use Project Management Software’s for aiding in presentation
Certifications – the format would be governed by the laws of the land. For Example – A certification that physical verification has been done as per Company Act, would not follow any other medium of presentation
Training Material (Internal / External) – Toolkits for client, helping him in faster execution and Internal Training Material. Example – Toolkit for client may include the explanations for inputting data for say reports developed by EY as a part of the Project Deliverable
Policy and Procedure Manuals/ Guideline (Internal / External)
Understanding the life of consultant – Typical knowledge management problems Faced within Projects Faced across organization Issues Applicable to Thesis Focus Getting to understand the best practices for the industry/Lack of industry specific information ✗ Working with different teams having different competencies and knowledge base (person specific knowledge base e.g. – a person may be good in X but he might not be good in Y kind of work, but because overall since he knows a little bit of both X and Y he is in the team) ✔ Lack of system integrity to dispense knowledge amongst teams working across locations (E.g – mail size of ppts are huge and the network esp remote networks cannot cope with the same) ✔ Scattered knowledge platforms proving a hindrance to completion ✔ EY doesn’t always subscribe to key information/research information portals to ease out on knowledge management challenges ✗ Reaching out to internal knowledge sharing platforms (poor connectivity) ✗ Non – updation of the internal knowledge platform ✗ Lack of sharing amongst teams – Data is privy to most of the teams ✔ Absence of e-learning modules for some of the key deliverables ✗ Absence of real time updation of project completion status and bottlenecks ✗ Absence of real time solutions for the bottlenecks faced ✔ These challenges are consistent across service lines ✗
Understanding the life of consultant – Persona
John works full-time at the Ernst and Young, Times square office. He juggles a fast paced career with family life and is very conscious about using his time productively. He strives to be efficient in whatever he does. He tries to provide his family with the best of everything.
Keeps up with fashion and latest gadgets.
Typically carries his laptop and blackberry to work. Is thinking about buying an iPhone.
28 years old
Masters Degree in Business Administrations
Wants to get the best in life, so wants to excel at his work
Likes to make friends with people and work collaboratively
John Smith Things I want to know Things I want to do
What are other teams working on?
What knowledge is relevant to my work?
What similar projects have been done previously?
Get to know what others are good at and contact them for help
Understanding the life of consultant – User Scenario John Smith needs to make a Proposal for a Client for Risk Advisory Organization Outside World Core Team Manager John Smith Team Member
John starts developing the outline for the report
He looks for best practice examples but only find previous projects from within his team
He passes on the outline to his team member to start putting in the facts
Meanwhile John has researched related projects that can be leveraged upon
John now needs to begin the analysis based on appropriate procedures and formulae
He completes the analysis and adds the results to the report
He hunts for appropriate recommendations that can be gathered from previous projects and applied to the current report
Manager/ Senior provides a general guideline about the project to John and the team.
Resource may/may not be provided with additional facts/figures by the Senior/Manager
Manager/Senior checks the proposal for correct facts / figures/client credential (if quoted) and also the confidentially clause (which states that the deliverable is only for the Client and not for public circulation)
Deliverable may be dispatched through print/email
Team member tries to figure out the best way to collect the right facts for the project
Team member searches for facts online, through databases and archives
Team member collects the facts from pervious projects done with the client
Prototypes Test Questions: Do domain experts volunteer and respond to a question? Test Audience: Parsons community
Community responded to this prototype
5 people responded and provided useful feedback
Most people viewed the prototype with some were amused
Community responds well to queries when it is in context
Information gleaned from a conversation is very granular and
Prototypes Test Questions: Does the community respond to an anonymous query and contribute valuable information which can be actualized? Test Audience: Parsons community
Community did not respond well to this prototype
2 people responded with one liners which were marginally useful
Most people ignored the prototype
Community does not respond to general queries and treats them like advertisement
Any data gathered through this process is superficial and not granular
Next Steps Continue further research Further ideation Explore possible technologies early on