IT Infrastructure and Knowledge Management in CAs Office
Ideal IT Infrastructure and Knowledge
Management in a Practicing CA’s Office
Indian Chartered Accountant | Entrepreneur | Domain Expert for CRM,
Knowledge Mgmt. & Professional Services Automation
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org Cell : + 9769476214
1 | Ideal IT Infrastructure and Knowledge Management in a Practicing CA‟s Office
CA firms are functioning in a world where they must necessarily process more and
more information in every part of the practice , not only to be competitive enough to
maintain their standards of reputation but also be equipped enough to offer single
stop solutions to clients to ensure profitable, fool proof intellectual consulting .
Management of intellectual capital is gaining importance in today‟s knowledge
society in every segment. Currently, knowledgebase of CA firms is mostly
“People Based.” If you don't know something, you do research or you request to a
knowledgeable firm member. This increases the individual knowledge but it is not
readily available to other firm members. Because firm members have different skills,
it is an on-going challenge to have the right knowledge, at the right place and at
the right time.
It becomes quite important for you to introspect, as you are the most trustworthy
people in business, your understanding of Information Technology, Knowledge
Management and your current standing on the same.
The rate of technological change is increasing at an ever quickening pace making
technology standards a moving target. Advances in hardware must be integrated into
the existing infrastructure as well as a constant stream of application updates and
system patches. Amidst all of these firms are facing the transition to a complete
digital (often referred to as paperless environment , where all personnel must evolve
their working process and adapt their systems for handling information in an
electronic format only). With all of these happening at once, it is important that firms
have a place to ensure that the strategic benefits of technology are properly
The most effective firms have achieved success by creating a technology
management team that systematically analyses the firm‟s infrastructure, the tools
and technologies that are evolving and build a well integrated technology plan and
budget to optimize their implementation.
IT Infrastructure Management
The first step in effective technology management is to ensure that either right
players are involved or the work of effective IT management is sourced to
trustworthy IT Facilities Management Company with the knowledge of cost effective
IT implementations. It is imperative that an owner or partner should look into it so
that approval of any initiatives can be taken faster. The views and need of IT
requirement from partners/members from tax and audit practice should be sought
equally and addressed adequately.
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Components of IT Infrastructure Management
Hardware constitutes major area of IT infrastructure management. Hardware
infrastructure can be broken down in to below mentioned components.
Network Servers: Network Server should be of reputed brands or be at least of
standard server configurations that are procured from a reliable vendor/s with a good
after sales service reputation.
Network & Remote Access:
Switches should be used rather than HUB to connect individual‟s users . Switches
are faster and less affected by network traffic and is definitely a little cheaper.
Cable is the medium through which information usually moves from one network
device to another. There are several types of cable which are commonly used with
LANs. In some cases, a network will utilize only one type of cable, other networks
will use a variety of cable types. Every dead or unusable connection slows down the
entire network and also becomes the reason for data loss. Structured cabling is
advisable which would facilitate proper management and networking of PCs and
would help in easy future expansions without interruption in the working of the firm.
Network Operating System (NOS): MS Windows Server 2003 is the most recent
and widely accepted, stable operating system available in the market. This is very
easy to use, uncomplicated and easily configurable hence it is advisable to procure
the same. All products should be acquired through proper authorized vendors which
allow the end user to reap great benefits.
Desktops & Workstations: PCs should be procured with optimal configuration with
maximum RAM for multi tasking and wide screen monitors to view multiple screens
at a time.
Laptop workstations: It is very beneficial for members working out of office / mobile
and needs ever time connectivity. Laptops with configuration of six months/ one year
behind are available at affordable prices. Laptop computers are small, batterypowered, lightweight and ideal for those who require portability.
Desktop Operating System: Operating system should support to all applications
used in office and be supported by sufficient RAM. Your Operating system should
facilitate usage of any software with smooth transition. OS should also be able to
work on cross platform applications.
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Backup Computers: One or two dedicated back up computer/s is advisable for
replacement in case of problem and minimize the down time and to ensure no
productivity is loss and continuity.
Printers: Use of laser printers instead of inkjet with standardized brands is
advisable. Laser printer is a common type of computer printer that produces high
quality printing, and is able to produce both text and graphics. LaserJet printers
have higher RAM capabilities for executing complex printing jobs. DeskJet do not
have high RAM capabilities, i.e., one LaserJet can handle the load of 2 inkjet
Scanners: Scanners make the whole task of documentation management very cost
effective now. Every CA‟s office should adapt to digital imaging of any document.
Due to scanning every document can be delivered through email and also can be
viewed from multiple locations (no copy and send hurdles).
Personal Digital Assistant (PDA): PDA‟s can be used by all members and staff
who remain out of office.
As a part of Hardware Management I recommend that firms pull together a
comprehensive inventory of all existing hardware components along with service and
Firm wide Applications:
It is important for any CA firm to analyze the type of applications that are used
across the firm as well the applications that are limited to a few desktops. The firm
wide applications should strike a balance between the ones that are used by all the
members like Microsoft Office as well as the applications needed to establish an
undisputed specialization that the firm wants. It is recommended that multiple
versions of any software should be stopped running. A system towards saving of all
documents that are generated through Microsoft Office or any specialized application
should be put in place immediately and Firm wide applications should have the
facility to import and store the documents generated through the usage of
applications and a smart record management system that ensures the quick retrieval
of records as and when required.
Web Site Development & Promotion:
Our web site is the best communicator to its visitors. While developing web site, try
to talk what the visitors want to hear and in their language. Enumerate what value
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your firm brings to them, very clearly and consistently. Your clients should be clearly
show dynamism and image of the firm.
Irrespective of the size of your firm, go ahead with an investment in website. This not
only offers out of the box business opportunities but also help in creating a brand.
However the guidelines suggested by the Institute of Chartered Accountant of India
will have to be followed for usage of the web.
CA Firms realize that the development of a successful niche practice can be very
profitable. Accordingly, they invest in CPE, seminars, and their niche time to develop
Using digital newsletters, or “eLetters (delivered via email)”. This allows firms to
contact clients as often as you would like, for a fractional costs. Additionally,
eLetters have the added benefit of not only making the firms appear more
technologically advanced but also appear more knowledgeable than competitors. To
successfully develop an eLetter, firms must obtain and maintain an email list,
develop and archive content, and deliver content consistently.
CAs control a significant amount of financial information / documents on their
networks and this information could be extremely valuable if not protected, so it is
their responsibility to do so. Protection begins with proper procedures to lock down
data on the network such that unauthorized people do not have access. Changing
passwords on a frequent basis (six months or less) and utilizing screensaver
passwords on workstations are a minimum requirement.
A CA firm is a wealth of information existing in countless forms/documents. As a
professional services provider, CAs enjoys the trust of client's like no other industry.
Successful maintenance of these bonds requires concise communication of
information on all client-related activities - including the performance of actual work.
On the service side, relationship management systems allow the firm to track client
calls, emails, etc., record and monitor service issues and convey critical information
on assignments. The contact management allows you to immediately discuss client
billing issues, convey the status of the assignment you are about to execute, review
prior discussions with staff on the problems with data received and access
supporting work papers and other documentation while the client is on the phone.
This immediacy provides a greater professional image and a more informed client.
Tax Return Automation Software
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Tax calculation tools and workflow tools are readily available now-a-days. Statutory
dates and return tracking tools have always been a feature of the firm‟s practice
management program, but they have evolved to a stage where firms are now
successfully using them. As clients deliver their tax materials, leading firms are
recording this information in their due date programs and tracking progress by
updating milestones for preparation, review, signing and extension, which provides
real time status on every return. Having the current and prior year‟s return available
concurrently onscreen significantly increases the productivity and greatly reduces
work in the Tax filing season.
Digital Tax Library
Today in India we have the availability of Tax Laws and Cases on conventional
electronic media formats like CD‟s and also the availability of the same online on
web. Due to this referencing of the acts, rules, procedures, notification, circulars,
case laws, new updated forms etc. can be easily made available through out the
firm. Updated libraries of these CD‟s should be maintained by every CA Firm. Firms
can also subscribe to web service providers who run online libraries and update
related information continually.
Digital Audit & Audit Tools
Audit is one of the most integral activity of a CA Firm. In India digital audit programs
have been gathering more and more acceptance and many digital audit tools are
available very easily. It helps CA Firms to benefit from developed audit programs as
a support for the auditors. Besides providing support to the auditors, these programs
are also an instrument to assure the quality of the audit.
One way that digital audit maximize the audit efficiency is by refining the work in
organizational terms as well as on the individual level. The tools should address
auditing, audit selection and tax matters, underreporting in the tax, tax evasion etc.
Electronic Document & Smart File Management Applications
An unbelievable amount of time can be wasted looking for files you don't remember
the names of. If you look around your office network, you are likely to find an
amazing number of files that no one owns because they were never named
intelligently to begin with.
One senior professional was telling me that he nearly missed a flight after a
meeting in which one-third of the time was spent hunting for files and folders for the
documents. The problem is file naming and saving conventions always differ from
person to person.
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Documents are the lifeblood of every CA firm. In today's work place, every body
uses software applications like MS Word and Excel to create documents. Any
manually prepared work papers should be questioned to determine if their
preparation was the most efficient way of creating them.
One essential element of an electronic document culture is an electronic file
storage structure that is easy to use and adequate for maintaining this electronic
information. This electronic document emphasis should start by the elimination of
manual work papers and less generation of O/C (Office copies) and best efforts to
organize documents in soft form itself.
The hard copy documents which we may receive from clients/ tax departments and
other sources etc. can be scanned and organized is a systematic manner for faster
retrieval in future.
You need a system to effectively organizes Microsoft Office documents so that an
authorized user can retrieve any document at any point of time, independent of the
creator, time and the computer it was saved.
Being a prerequisite of Knowledge Management this topic is covered in a greater
detail in discussion of Knowledge Management.
At the completion of every assignment, firm personnel should devote sufficient time
to analyze what they learned from the completed assignment, discuss how they
could have improved upon the quality and how this information could be applied and
beneficial to future assignments. The results of these meetings should be
documented, including supporting schedules and processes, and other potential
benefits of the information should be identified.
What is Knowledge Management, how it is beneficial and how it can be implemented
in a practicing CA Office has been discussed in detail separately.
Document Automation Tools
Automated document assembly tools ca n restructure the methods CAs use for
repetitive drafting tasks, like routine complaints in Tax appeal cases or documents
prepared in uncomplicated real estate matters. Document assembly can also support
more complicated transactions if the documents needed to complete the transactions
do not require large amounts of customized drafting. Many types of software provide
document automation solutions that give end users the power to create text-based
templates and assemble text documents. The result is an automatically compiled
and flawless document. Few of the software that are available in market are
Activedocs, Hotdoc etc.
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Practice Management System
Practice Management Application will cover complete assignment cycle from
Acceptance to the completion of the assignment. In an accounting practice, the
software application can be used for Acceptance, Allocation, Workflow, Progress
Reporting, Monitoring, Completion, Approval & Delivery of assignments.
Collaboration & Messaging Applications
These applications include tools that allow individuals to communicate and share
information effectively in an electronic format. E-mail has become almost universal
amongst business people to converse and transfer information, and its close relative
Instant Message (IM) allows collaboration in real time with minimal system
overhead. Messaging applications have evolved to voice mail and messaging being
incorporated into these email systems providing the capability to move them like any
other electronic document and either play them in their native format or convert them
to text, depending on the recipient‟s requirements.
Every firm should select the best tool like an accounting package which can help you
to maintain your accounts on receipt basis.
Also, apart from implementing an IT tool to handle your financials, this tool has to be
managed which includes Pipeline Reporting, Simplify Expense Reporting etc. in a
very pro-active manner.
Learning & Training Management
With technology being introduced at an increasingly faster rate, it is imperative that
CAs make a conscious effort to understand and utilize those technologies within their
organizations. The best firms have a structure in place to identify the most effective
client service processes and standardize them as part of a “Standard Procedures”
concept. Many firms nowadays also have a person dedicated to training firm
personnel and developing an ongoing learning curriculum to optimize the
effectiveness of each individual. Its very obvious that best technologies can be
implemented within organizatio ns. It is important to have at least one member of
your organization responsible for keeping on top of technologies as they evolve and
making the determination of how you can benefit.
Most accounting firms have difficulty keeping an accurate inventory of their
technologies. Keeping inventory of workstation models/types, operating system
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versions, hard drive sizes, amount of RAM, access level rights, software applications
in use etc. is very hard to track manually. All of this information must be considered
when preparing IT budgets or when allocating equipment to new staff. Inventory can
be collected at regular user-defined intervals to ensure that the firm always has
access to up-to-date asset inventory information.
CAs today are extremely reliant on their IT infrastructure to service clients. Any loss
in the ability to access network resources translates directly into lost profitability so
firms must do all they can to protect their information network. This begins by first
ensuring that all data is backed up, verified, and stored offsite in a format that is
easily accessible in the event of any disaster. The firm should also develop a
business continuation plan that outlines the network infrastructure and includes
processes to rebuild this if necessary.
Anti Virus/ Anti Spam Solutions & Firewalls
In this modern era of Information Technology, many unwanted hindrances like
viruses and spam mails too have to be faced by firms accepting IT as a leveraging
tool to enhance their efficiency. Though no fool proof tools exist firms need to rely on
prevention and damage control tactics like acquiring regular updates of anti viruses
across office network, locking down mischievous mails and pornographic sites,
verifying the locks are working and implement Firewalls to stop remote unauthorized
connectivity through internet/IP access
Authentication & Password Management
User authentication and password protection are the most basic and a very easy
technology that can be implemented by firm owners. Not limiting to this, most of the
application and system software are equipped with an facility to authenticate users
with a password. Though provided the firm management must take care that these
passwords and users are managed appropriately and changed at regular intervals to
maintain the consistency of then security level in the firms.
Storage & Back up Management
As days pass by firms who have already implemented IT will have to seriously
evaluate the amount of information they generate and the volume of information that
they may churn out in a stipulated time period. Firms must make provision to occupy
all the information that is generated and see to it that the information that they might
want to store has necessarily an excellent business value.
Not only this, firm management must be alert enough to implement appropriate
backup policies and find out an effective way to backup all information daily and
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periodically. Firm authorities should ensure that all the data /documents should be
backed up and stored away safely in case of an emergency situation.
Strategies for successful IT Management
Evaluate Current IT infrastructure
You need to analyze your software and hardware equipments and decide whether to
acquire more and/or update existing hardware and software.
Analyze Departmental Process & Procedures
Conduct interview of selected personnel via group discussions (tax, audit,
accounting, administration etc.) to determine bottlenecks and redundancy and make
recommendations to improve these situations .
Stabilize Existing IT Infrastructure Environment
All your efforts to establish an appropriate IT set up will go waste unless you
dedicate time to stabilize the usage of the existing IT setup and put efforts to see that
the end user accepts the change and the investment in IT is exploited through
massive usage by the firm employees and other partners. A few to do this can be
derived through maximizing usage of existing applications, budget allocation for
training on existing platforms, standardize firm wise best practices for usage of IT
applications and stress on planning towards paperless (less papers) office
Advantages of an Ideal IT Set UP
A Firm with ideal IT infrastructure will have distinct advantages over competitors.
Profits will be derived in long term directly as tangible gain or intangible assets.
Operating costs will be minimal (without the overhead), and most important, there
will be complete access to the world market without geographic, legal, or political
barriers. These features in conjunction with innovative marketing strategies, should
allow the CA Office, to quickly overcome its competition and become a leader in its
field of consulting.
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Knowledge Management in Practicing CA’s Office
Most firms‟ knowledge is also “Paper-Based” and when you want information about
a client, you check with the paper file. The firm‟s policies and procedures are
restricted in employee‟s handbook, appointment programs, and other written
materials. Paper-based information is typically time consuming to access and
A lot of the communications with clients (client knowledge) goes unrecorded. Letters
documents, memos, and tax returns are maintained in client files. This knowledge
about the clients exists only in the memories of the firm members concerned.
Sharing this type of knowledge with other firm members occurs only occasionally. If
the firm member concerned leaves the firm, this knowledge is lost.
The way knowledge is maintained in CA firms today is in the same way it was
managed 5 years ago. Using Groupware, Document Management and Knowledge
Management solutions, firms can enhance and organize their knowledge base and
also reduce the efforts put into acquiring it.
What is Knowledge?
your ideas are?
you have read?
you have heard?
Knowledge often is being considered the property of individuals while a great deal of
knowledge is produced and held collectively. Such knowledge is generated when
people work together. Most of you can not articulate what you know. Knowledge is
largely invisible and often comes to mind only when you need it to answer a question
or solve a problem.
To understand the meaning of knowledge you need to understand what knowledge
actually is, and how it is different from data, information, and wisdom.
Data: Data can be defined as unstructured information. It simply exists and has no
significance beyond its existence.
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Information: Data becomes information when its creator adds meaning, which
makes it relevant and fulfills a purpose.
Knowledge: knowledge is the right collection of information, such that its intent is to
be useful. It originates and applied in the minds of knowledge owner.
Wisdom: Wisdom is the process by which you judge between right and wrong, good
and bad. Computers do not have, and will never have the ability to posses wisdom.
Classification of Knowledge
Explicit knowledge is the kind of knowledge that is relatively easily put down on
paper or into another media and directly accessible to the persons one wishes to
transfer knowledge to. An example could be a CA Firm‟s repository of template
documents or it could be repositories of various procedures, case laws or judgments
etc. with comments attached for better understanding.
You know more than what you can tell and hence tacit knowledge is not easily
transferred. Generally, transfer of tacit knowledge requires extensive personal
contact and meetings etc.
There is no argument that tacit knowledge plays an important role in the way you
make decisions and perform your work. To illustrate, look at the Audit Manager. Over
the course of an audit, the audit manager has to make many decisions, such as how
to allocate resources, when to escalate a problem, who to rely on etc. Each of these
actions and decisions requires explicit and tacit knowledge in varying proportions.
The tacit knowledge might consist of things like "gut feelings," experience or some
other knowledge that you can't find in books or in audit documentation.
In most of these situations, there is a strong emphasis placed on good
documentation. The problem is that current documentation methods have provided
us with little help in capturing, retaining, and sharing all that important tacit
What is Knowledge Management (KM)?
Knowledge Management is a concept in which an organization leverages its
collective wisdom to increase responsiveness, efficiency and productivity. KM
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enables an enterprise to gather, organize and share its knowledge in terms of
resources, documents and people‟s skills. It is a cost saving process that
“While technology and processes are important to Knowledge Management , it
is people who determines its success”
Knowledge Management in CA firms
Studies reveal that more than 80% knowledge of a CA firm is stored in documents.
These documents which can be stored as standard formats, templates, model
documents, letter formats, procedures and other information are referred to as
knowledge documents. The ultimate value of documentation in a CA Firms lies in
the ability to capture, retain, and share knowledge to those who need to use it. Each
and every action and decision taken within the CA Firms is dependent on
If document management is going to play a role in meeting the needs of today's CA
Firms, then it means your documents will need to become better vehicles to capture,
retain, transfer, and use of knowledge, both explicit as well as tacit. However, at the
same time you upgrade your documentation methods, you must also expand the
way you think about the content. There is more to the knowledge life cycle than just
the creation process. You also need to enhance your understanding of how
knowledge contained in documents is retained, maintained, shared, and made
First change that the CA firms need to make in the knowledge collection process is
by means of increasing the emphasis on electronic documents. This electronic
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document importance should start by the removal of manual work papers.
Efficiencies will be gained through easier editing and reuse of documents. You do
the work once, document it, and store it electronically for future use. Then, when the
right occasion arises, you use this electronic document, with appropriate editing, to
meet the needs of some other client or another assignment.
The software for creating electronic documents is readily available. Office
applications such as Microsoft® Word and Excel are being used in almost every CA
firm. One essential element of an electronic document culture is an electronic file
storage structure that is easy to use and adequate for maintaining these electronic
documents. You need a uniform file naming system and well defined folder
hierarchy to store/save documents so that will help you to create office documents
faster & smarter.
Microsoft® Word and Excel should be used for each and every documentation need
and any manually prepared document should be questioned to determine if their
Problem Areas of Knowledge Loss and Retention
Members and employees of the CA firms often spend their precious time for a futile
search of knowledge, which they require to fulfill their job requirements. The required
knowledge is somewhere available in the firm‟s document repository but is not
accessible when needed.
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Studies show that by implementation of Knowledge Management Solution, the
productivity can be increased at least by 30 % .
Examples of missing Knowledge Retention
A number of qualified or semi qualified professionals or employees in a CA
Firm work on similar problems. They may not know about the activities and
expertise of the others.
Result: Duplication of work.
One professional or a team of professional has developed an extremely
efficient system to work upon a particular assignment. Other members in the
firm should profit from their methods. However, there is no policy or system to
share this knowledge.
Result: Knowledge cannot be reused and is forgotten in a short period.
A partner tries to secure a new client or a new assignment from an existing
client. But the deal does not go through. The reasons for this failure or
Result: Other partners or employees do not learn from this experience
and repeats the same mistake.
A client complains about the delivery of service but also gives suggestions for
its improvement. This information is usually appreciated, but it is seldom
communicated to the other others.
Result: Useful user related knowledge cannot be utilized for service
An assignment has come to a conclusion. The assignment management has
all the finding and results. But the whole process with all the "trials & errors",
the faults, the negative results and "lessons learned" are usually not
Result: Expertise and knowledge cannot be communicated and shared.
A professional or an employee is leaving the firm. His knowledge has not yet
been transferred to the others.
Result: Knowledge loss. For example, personal notes
documentation is also useless unless the others know about it.
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A partner or an employee suddenly gets ill. He is the only one, who through
his experience knows what to do when a certain document or set of
documents not traceable.
Result: An expensive search for that expertise and knowledge.
KM: A Roadmap to Excellence
Smart File Management
Organizing office documents effectively so that an authorized user can retrieve any
document at any point of time, independent of the creator, time and the computer it
was saved on.
What documents generated and when?
Where they were saved?
Who have access?
List of all documents
A system to identify knowledge documents from working documents.
A central repository of knowledge documents to make them available to authorized
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Easier transfer of operation knowledge from departing/already departed employees
to their successors and easier handover of work in progress.
Implementation of KM in CA Firms
- Step 1: Identification of the "real" Problem.
You need to assess the risk of losing critical and valuable knowledge and skills. The
following questions and other weaknesses in your firm need to be identified. It should
be clear that Knowledge Management Solutions are implemented to avoid
knowledge loss. A roadmap has to be formulated as to what is to be achieved with
Do the partners/employees have access to a common knowledgebase?
Do the expertise in the core areas and processes collected and
Does these expertise shared between the partners/emp loyees?
Can the experience gained from the assignments be reused again and
Does the knowledge of partners/employees available during their
Is there any transfer procedures defined, if the partner/employee changes
their work profile?
Is there an imminent retirement of important partners/employees planned?
Can the new professionals / employees be trained quickly?
Do you lose knowledge of temporary workforce?
Step 2: Identify what knowledge is to be retained, and specify how and in
You need to define and decide the critical areas of knowledge which are to be
retained by your firm. These could be expertise, ideas, competencies, processes,
client‟s information and / or assignments. You need to plan the structure as how to
build your knowledge repository, which are stored as central repository and well
Individual knowledge retention is also important; you should create your specific
knowledge documents and be careful to take your time while categorizing.
Step 3: Definition of the Knowledge and the role of employees to capture and
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After the successful completion of the first two steps, you should have the following
Identification of critical and problem areas associated with knowledge loss
The goal you want to achieve through a KM solution
One hierarchical structure of important knowledge areas and structure to
store knowledge documents.
It should be decided that who will be responsible to assess, capture, manage and
store valuable knowledge in a KM solution.
First, it is to be determined who is going to be the knowledge manager. He
determines the access rights of the users. Then it is to be decided whether the user
is responsible to store his knowledge or is it the knowledge manager.
Step 4: Integration and Setup of KM Solution
One should take care that KM Solution must be so defined that it functions
permanently and adds value continuously. The values generated over a period of
time, have to be integrated again in the process. In the beginning, it generates and
selects new critical knowledge in important service processes or knowledge areas.
Step 5: Supervision and Assistance in Feedback and transfer of Knowledge
back into the Firm.
You should define the specific points where the knowledge, as an added value,
should be transferred back into your firm. This should happen irrespective of what
knowledge a user is looking for in the knowledge base using your KM solution.
Check list, for example, can be added to an existing service process. The users
involved should be advised to search the knowledge base for a particular theme and
note down whether knowledge was found or not. If it was found, can it be used by all
the members of the firm? It also opens the opportunity for new employees. After a
period of 6-12 months, a review should be conducted among those employees, who
were either knowledge experts or users in this Knowledge Management Solution and
the results should be adapted.
Benefits of Knowledge Management Solution:
In today‟s competitive professional environment, knowledge management is a need
like word processing or e-mail. It is difficult to measure advantages of knowledge
management in rupee terms. It is apparent that the intangible benefits of knowledge
Saves Precious Time and effectively Money:
can generate more money.
You can save time. It means, you
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Quick services to clients: You can more efficiently produce documents and deliver
them to your clients faster and thus offer a better quality of service. This makes you
more effective and has clear benefits for client relationship management.
Improved Service Quality: You capture your specialist knowledge in a document or
system. The quality of your advice will be better because you know more or have the
critical high value information readily available to you, and the quality of your
documents will be better because it incorporates the accumulated wisdom of a range
Increase Efficiency and enhance productivity: Good KM Solution makes life
easier. It makes possible to find what you want when you want it. This increases
productivity and reduces stress.
No adverse effect on transfer/leave of staff: Capturing knowledge in a system
means that it doesn‟t walk out of the door if an individual leaves the firm. Some
would argue that it is impossible to capture the „tacit‟ knowledge that resides in the
minds of individuals. This is without doubt true. However, if you can describe the
behavior of an individual in a particular circumstance and put that description into a
system accessible by others, you enable other members of the firm / employees to
learn from that behavior and facilitate the transfer of the relevant knowledge and
Improved Learning Environment: Good knowledge management helps
professionals and employees of the firm to learn more from other members in the
firm, ensuring that firm expertise is captured, retained and made available.
Faster Learning to new Entrants: Effective knowledge management assists in the
introduction of new members/employees into the firm. It makes easier for new
entrants to identify firm‟s working style and to match firm‟s quality requirements.
Effective Collaboration: Effective knowledge management facilitates collaboration.
It does this by maintaining a shared database of resources credited to authors, and
by having an expertise location system.
Best Utilization of IT resources: Good knowledge management can improve
utilization of existing resources, including technology. At many firms computers are
being used as electronic type writers in the absence of document management and
Be More Competitive: If a firm‟s competitors are using KM Solution and as a result
are more effective, and if your firm wants to survive and expand, you must do it too.
19 | Ideal IT Infrastructure and Knowledge Management in a Practicing CA‟s Office