Knowledge management is a practice where you create, share, and use specific information inside an organization. Companies often distribute the information through WIKIs, FAQs, repositories, workflows, and so on. The idea is to offer easily accessible expertise to the personnel for the benefit of the company.
There are three types of knowledge:
- Explicit knowledge is when info is organized into documents, manuals, videos, diagrams, etc.
- Tacit knowledge refers to info stuck in people’s heads that could benefit the company if shared
- Embedded knowledge points to info from policies, legal docs, and other unstructured formats
An organization needs to capture, order, and distribute all types of knowledge. Generally, when knowledge management systems (KMS) are introduced, the emphasis is put solely on explicit knowledge, ignoring the other two types.
An equally important part of KMS is curating knowledge. Gathering info is just the first part. The second part is controlling the data. There are a few questions to ask when curating data to preserve relevancy and integrity:
- What’s the current application of the information? Will it ever end?
- When should I edit, adjust, or review the info?
- What’s the usage and relevancy of the knowledge?
- Are the sources reliable?
The information doesn’t manage itself. Regularly checking the validity of the offered knowledge is vital to maintain a beneficial work environment. Some companies even outsource curating responsibilities to services such as kms-technology.com/, uk.bestessays.com, kms-team.com, and similar firms.
First mistake: not considering KMS as an essential feature in your company’s culture
It’s important to realize that having the right information is half the battle. More so, if you don’t value knowledge in general, it’s impossible to implement a successful KMS. Some companies think that having strict, one-way protocols will solve most of their problems, but that’s crippling creativity and out-of-the-box solutions that might greatly benefit the organization.
Implement a system where all employees can locate, and most importantly, share information. If workers are set on hoarding the tricks of the trade, then there’s no team play.
Second mistake: focusing solely on gathering information
As partially explained before, collecting terabytes of knowledge isn’t going to benefit the company on its own. The information must be used and shared. Creating an encyclopedia that nobody uses is entirely useless. So, concentrate on a system that’s effective in searching and distributing said database.
Third mistake: not incentivizing workers to use the KMS
Encouraging collaboration is good, but you’ll also need direct motivation. Devise an incentive for those who properly use the KMS. Even if the group is solid, individuals will still act based on their own interest. So why not align personal gain with group collaboration?
Reward employees that are cooperating with others through the KMS. Give the employee a bonus and let everyone know. Additionally, you could create a team bonus for the most proactive workgroup. There’s no need to spend a lot of money on these bonuses. However, make sure that the gesture is appreciated and motivating.
Fourth mistake: creating a generic KMS that doesn’t fit the market
When strategizing the KMS, you’ll have to consider the context of your company. A good KMS provides valuable input even for the most particular situations. An all-in-one system won’t be of much help in solving unique problems. That’s why you should think ahead and tailor the KMS accordingly.
Fifth mistake: trying to fix issues by adding numerous pieces of software
Many companies don’t have an organized IT plan. They add dozens of apps in the hope of solving an underlying issue. In most cases, they end up with a much bigger problem than before. It’s crucial to keep the systems as light and straightforward as possible. Maintain a clean KMS in the same way you keep the actual information well-organized.
Sixth mistake: never updating the KMS to keep up with new procedures
There’s a common misconception that installing a KMS system seals the project forever. However, efficient systems are regularly updated, maintained, and evaluated. Managers should also ensure that a system is still valid in current times. Allocate some resources in ensuring that the KMS is well-kept and ready for the future.
Apart from the actual implementation, similar structures need curating for easy access and maintaining relevancy. Outsourcing is also an alternative. Furthermore, there are a few classic mistakes to watch out for when dealing with KMS:
- First mistake: not considering KMS as an essential feature in your company’s culture
- Second mistake: focusing solely on gathering information
- Third mistake: not incentivizing workers to use the KMS
- Fourth mistake: creating a generic KMS that doesn’t fit the market
- Fifth mistake: trying to fix issues by adding numerous pieces of software
- Sixth mistake: never updating the KMS to keep up with new procedures
Justin is a marketing specialist and blogger from Leicester, UK. When not working and rooting for Leicester FC, he likes to discuss new trends in digital marketing and share his own ideas with readers on different blogs and forums. Currently, he is working as a content marketer at college paper writing services and uk.bestessays.