In my IM / IT developmental experiences I have found a consistent gap between what was being done (developed) and what the orgaization really needed (its requirements). Only very rarely did I experience meaningful dialogue between presenter and audience when a new IM / IT initiative was being presented as a development proposal.
The development of organizational knowledge management is usually frustrated by such “ common knowledge ”
However, when a work group is challenged to think and talk about the organization - what its mission is - what it ’ s trying to do - and how it works - you start to hear really important things that ought to form part of the requirements statement.
Everyone has their own version of the truth.
There are a number of significant factors in the organizational environment that may or may not be “ drivers. ” In other words - the IM / IT / KM developers may be aware and responsive to this enviironment, or they may not.
Some Common Myths“There’s no problem replacing those departing employees, just hire more consultants!”“We just need everyone to have personal training plans”“We need to spend more on technology for us to communicate better”“Fred can document everything he knows before he retires”“We need a better policy framework to become a learning organization”“You can’t ‘manage’ knowledge, so Knowledge Management can’t exist”
Some Common Truths“We need to break down the barriers between the silos”“We need to function more like a team”“We need to improve the decision-making process”“We need to be more responsive to changes in public sector drivers and priorities”“We need to know how to deal with the HR issues of the future”“We need to be more efficient and effective in times of shrinking budgets”
What are today’s organizationalchallenges? Ambiguity and discontinuity between mission and activity Continuous change in organization, rules and processes Moving targets, moving methods (BPR/TQM/BsC) Stovepipes / silos / low to nil communication Partner / regulator / stakeholder right to play Conclusion: Ends are debatable, means are all over the place, and we are not all too sure about what we are. And, as we drive ourselves and our organizations to sort this all out, We know we can make it all happen only though a workforce suffering from “Initiative Fatigue” – or “IF”
Context and DriversChanging workforce: brain drain, “Baby-boomer” retirementsInnovation in service delivery: ASD, partnershipsGovernance, accountability and risk management“Modern Comptrollership”For government - citizen focus, public service values, managing for results, responsible spending)Emphasis on recruitment, workplace well-being, and learning and developmentModernizing Human Resource ManagementProgram Review, Innovation, Security, global competition
Characteristics of a high performanceorganization• What and how work to be done is known• Debate focuses on methods, not goals• Highly efficient and effective decision-making• Continual process review (adaptivity)• The necessary tools are in place• Roadblocks are minimal• Energy / resources expended only on essentials
Example of a high performanceorganization (real estate) 1• Well defined processes including: • a process for continuous improvement • a process for managing business intelligence• A culture of information sharing, tips and advice and collaboration• A business model focused clearly on: • organizational and individual success and sustainability • selling property and protecting the agent
Example of a high performanceorganization (real estate) 2• Masses of structured data (transactions, state of economy, street resident index, telephone directories)• Large information holdings: (mortgage rules; lenders and interest rates; maps; marketing methods and costs; existing and potential customers; communications practices; intellectual capital)• Great knowledge in: (qualifying, finding / matching properties and clients, selling, closing)
If we described an organization’s performance in thisway, we’d say it was….Achieving enterprise-wide definition, establishment, operation and continuous improvement of the organization and its capability; its information and knowledge; and its collaborative information technologies – all directed towards ensuring the organization remains firmly focused on operational effectiveness. ……….I would call this “Knowledge Management”
Knowledge…….What one has when information, people andprocess are brought together so thatinformation can be applied effectively inachieving results.
Value The information issue in knowledge management in the degree of utility of the information The organizational issues in knowledge management include the degree to which:• Decisions are based on high quality knowledge (intelligence)• The parts of the organization work together• Activity relates to mission and mandate
Mark Addleson’s View KM is embedded in (communities of) practice – It is the way wedo things. It is not an add-on. You become a ‘knowledge centered’ organization. Everyone does KM - from mail rooms to board rooms and police officers to city hall. We understand better what KM is not: it is neither simply ‘improved communications’, ‘better training’, nor ‘new technology’. Much of what is important in KM cannot be measured and trying to make it measurable means we pay attention to the wrong things
Some Federal organizations use KM as “one” instrument forstrategic change management……… A learning strategy vehicle; a model and process for information sharing and collaboration; communities of practice A set of principles guiding management practices including decision-making Information product identification and marketing (intellectual capitalization and intellectual capitalism); knowledge mapping Methodology for knowledge capture and exploitation to deliver a knowledge- based continuous learning and improving organization Information Management A guide for IM/IT architecture development
The “Information” in “Information Technology / Information Management”issue organizations do ‘corporate think’ - they capitalize “Intelligent on making tacit knowledge part of their infrastructure. They automatically process and deliver information necessary for the achievement of objectives across the entire organization. Combining raw data, facts and figures with validating insights and making the results available enterprise-wide enables an IM paradigm shift.”
What is Knowledge Management?Knowledge management refers to the processes of creating, capturing, transferringand using knowledge to enhance organizational performance. Knowledgemanagement is most frequently associated with two particular types of activities: - Those activities that attempt to document and appropriate knowledge that individuals have (sometimes called the codification of knowledge) and activities to disseminate that knowledge throughout the organization. - Those activities that facilitate human exchanges in which knowledge that is not codified (tacit knowledge) can be shared. Public Service Commission of Canada, 1998Knowledge Management is a multi-disciplinary approach to using and managingorganizational knowledge that is based on sound information managementpractices, focussed on organizational learning, recognizing the contribution andvalue of employees, and is enabled by technology. It is primarily concerned withthe content of knowledge within the organization and how that knowledge canimprove organizational performance. Interdepartmental Knowledge Management Forum, 1999
Coordinates David G. Jones, Ottawa Canada @shibumimc Shibumi.email@example.com