Buckmann labs KM case study


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Knowledge Management initiative in Buckman labs

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  • For plan for 1995:Additional expenditure can be invested in the following where bob refer it as probability of success:Competitive Equation, Speed of Response and Ability to Compete. Lastly, Bob also pay attention to each of the individual’s comments in order to reduced disparity. This is because Bob feels that people can see what are the problems faced in their own position much better than other who are not.
  • Buckmann labs KM case study

    1. 1. AGENDA Company Profile Problems encountered Approaches Implementation Results Post implementation challenges Future challenges
    2. 2. COMPANY PROFILE Buckman is global, serving customers in more than 90 countries with the core business including paper technologies, water technologies, leather technologies and performance chemicals. It was founded in 1945, by Dr. Stanley Buckman, started as one 50-gallon process vessel and five employees. Now the company has become a global business employing 1500 people around the world. Yet there isn‘t a more nimble, adaptive, or accessible specialty chemical solutions company on the planet.
    4. 4. PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED New Leadership‘s New Ideas  Change the management stytle from centralization to decentralization  Turn the company from product-driven to customer- driven mode  Determine what became the company‘s code of ethics ( see Exhibit 1)
    5. 5. PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED Approaches to best practices  Sending out PhDs to gather best business practices worldwide and share with all associates in the company. However ……  All general managers were connected to a database with IBM‘s network for email. However …  Launched the first formal system , then improved……
    6. 6. PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED Change for new needs:  decided to speed up the decision-making process so that ……  began to think about how individual knowledge bases could be shared and utilized so that ……  Want to creat a network through which every employees could be connected so that ……
    7. 7. PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED Conclusion:  All these problems faced that encourage Buckman Labortories to implement KM …  Next step: Action!
    8. 8. APPROACHES K‘Netix - The Buckman Knowledge Network Bob Buckman established Knowledge Transfer Department (KTD) in 1992
    9. 9. APPROACHES What did Bob Buckman do?  Company‘s entire network was put on CompuServe.  KTD built K‘Netix on CompuServe platform and their aim was to make it user friendly.  Every salesperson was given a leased notebook and modem.  Employees now had one ID and could make a single phone call that established point-to-point link with headquarters.  Access to all of CompuServe‘s global information services.
    10. 10. APPROACHES Forums – Heart of K‘Netix  Heart of K‘Netix was the forums where anyone could post a message, question and/or request for help.  TechForum was the major forum and was open to all employees.  It consisted of 20 sections and each had a message board, conference room and library section.
    11. 11. APPROACHES TechForum - Features & Goals  Majority of the sections in the forums were devoted to business areas within Buckman Laboratories and focused on helping customers to improve their productivity.  Few sections were dedicated to improve operational efficiency and effectiveness of Buckman Laboratories.  Private forums were designed for Buckman‘s core customers to give advice tailored to their needs.  Customer information center had all information about each Buckman customer.
    12. 12. APPROACHES Creating Knowledge Base  Systems operators (Sysops) were appointed to monitor the discussion in forums, the content of messages and track requests.  They tried to get the answer within 24 hours; if not they contacted the people directly and asked them to respond.  Sysops appointed two industry experts in each forum to be primary answer givers.  Once a topic is closed, the experts and Sysops would decide which of these would go into the permanent knowledge base.  They also wrote abstracts and summary of discussion points for each section and post the information as summary at the end of each week.
    13. 13. IMPLEMENTATION The Launch of K‘Netix  Started with a day‘s intensive hands on training  Managers try the system and their initial negative remarks – ﹡Timelessness as they were less enthusiastic ﹡ Need for message filters ﹡Need to measure the Quality of information  Nevertheless, Bob believed its potential as such.  He was clear with his point on promotion of intelligent people who do the best job of knowledge sharing.
    14. 14. IMPLEMENTATION Breaking the sense of hesitancy Emphasis on utilization :  Freedom to communicate to everyone in line with the code of ethics  Flexibility in work and offering a relaxed environment Initial Enhancements:  Classification of Discussion topics based on ―need to know‖  Multi lingual discussions with translators to encourage the employee audience who speak more than 15 languages
    15. 15. IMPLEMENTATION The 4th Wave A summit to reward 150 best knowledge sharers in K‘Netix Purpose:  Building trust in relationship  To foster team spirit  Realizing the change to close the knowledge gap  Work on the ways to improve Identifying the change with a brainstorm  Top cause for less participation of non US associates???  medium of communication?  ‗Yes‘ was the heated discussion‘s echo Result - Birth of multi language forums
    16. 16. RESULTS In 1994:  Reported sales: $246 million  Expenditure: $8.4 million Plans for 1995:  Additional expenditure: $9.7 million
    17. 17. RESULTS Measurements Cited in Accessing Performance 80 70 60Percentage 50 40 30 20 10 0 Associates Product (Less Graudate (Selling) than 5 years) Associates 1979 16 22 39 1994 65 33 72
    18. 18. POST IMPLEMENTATION CHALLENGES New Challenge in early 1996:  How Buckman Laboratories competed successfully against much bigger competitors?  Excess capacity in the paper industry
    19. 19. POST IMPLEMENTATION CHALLENGES Revised Strategies:  Emphasize ―customer intimacy‖  Three ―key global market targets‖—paper, leather and water (approximately 75% of current sales)  The essence of customer intimacy was to attract customers in the targeted segments who valued close working relationships and the value-added benefits that Buckman could provide.
    20. 20. POST IMPLEMENTATION CHALLENGES Implement New Strategies:  By June communicated the strategy to all associates  Developing a detailed implementation  Revise the original mission statement  the new mission statement: ―We will create, manufacture, and market specialty chemicals to fulfill the needs of our customers throughout the world. We will be leaders in the control of microorganisms and will participate in selected markets where our chemical, manufacturing, or marketing strengths will give us a competitive advantage.‖
    21. 21. POST IMPLEMENTATION CHALLENGES ―Effectively Engaged‖ with Customers  ―The number of people in the organization working on the relationship with the customer relative to the total organization will determine the momentum of the organization.‖  New Goal:  By 2000 - 80% of associates ―effectively engaged‖ with the customer  Ultimately - ―everyone in the company should be involved with customers in some way‖
    22. 22. POST IMPLEMENTATION CHALLENGES A new focus on enabling associates to expand their knowledge:  Building a Learning Center  Ranging from short training courses and reference materials to advanced academic degrees.  Free courses, with the associate only responsible for a passing grade. Stressed a change in management‘s philosophy  As for investments in people, you need to shift from an expense philosophy to an investment philosophy
    23. 23. FUTURE CHALLENGES Forum Cost of usage after K‘Netix switch Building trust in Virtual World
    24. 24. FUTURE CHALLENGES Forum usage dropped!  Systems were developed in-house.  Prior to the switch, all employees were given a detailed system‘s manual .  But forum usage dropped right after switch!  Should Buckman be worry? ↓30%
    25. 25. FUTURE CHALLENGES Will cost of K‘Netix increase?  With increasing price pressures, questions on the cost of K‘Netix was raised.  Does it make sense to continue budgeting 3.5% to 4.5% of revenues each year?
    26. 26. FUTURE CHALLENGES How to build trust in V-World?  Building trust involves  Major culture change  Strong Persistence  Continual cut-and-paste process Will the employees at Buckman Labs willing to change?
    27. 27. QUESTIONS?