Our collective digital knowledge reservoir has grown exponentially over the last two decades. We are in hyper-record state! We are becoming more accustomed to recording all our engagements, interactions and communications, in both our personal and professional lives. This recorded data holds valuable information which can be constructed and concatenated to tell stories of the collective digitally active citizenry. This is indeed valuable information for marketers and governments. We are seeing many strides by the likes of Google and Facebook using this data to advance their business empires. More close to home, we have seen a recent success story of a Cape Town company, BrandsEye, being able to mine the Facebook and Twitter posts to correctly predict BREXIT as well as the US election outcomes.
This is certainly great news that we can find innovative ways to gain insight in our collective on-line human psyche and to use this for predictive modelling or for a marketing advantage. The fact is that not every company or organisation has the resources to analyse terabytes of data hoping to find a little gold nugget. In fact, not all data is valuable! Many companies are merely looking for ways to manage their internal data, information and knowledge and turn it into a useful resource to ensure that effective decisions are made. This is where knowledge management plays a significant role; having a structured approach to helping organisations understand how their intellectual based assets can help improve the way they do business.
Managing intellectual Assets: A systematic and coherent approach to developing a Knowledge Management strategy.
Knowledge Management (KM) is no longer a New Age, turn of the millennium fad. It is becoming an integral part of our professional lives. Our collective knowledge and experiences can make a major contribution towards the growth and development of an organisation. Unlike the process of mining huge datasets hoping to find a pattern in the digital noise, Knowledge Management is about having a proactive strategy in place to focus on the content that is of importance to you. A coherent Knowledge Management approach will be led by the organisation’s vision and driven by the desire to optimise performance and ensure that defensible decisions are made.
A successful KM strategy will bring people together that would result in meaningful exchange of ideas, experience and expertise. Part of this is to understand the internal process for engaging and making decisions. The KM strategy must be able to draw on the current dynamics with view of changing it over time to the desired state. A rapid top down change in the way organisation undertake their business will not be successful. Technology is a non-negotiable essential tool to effect change; however, once again, it must tailored to the organisation’s culture.
Data governance is becoming an increasingly important subject to organisations. This matter is making its way onto all agendas, as poor data governance is a serious organisational risk. Intimately linked to governance is the crux of KM: the content. The basis of our collective knowledge reservoir. As we have seen, having tombs of content is not always desirable, it can create more chaos and confusion. We need to know what we are collecting, how it is collected, why we are doing it, who will be using it and who can access it.
Knowledge Management is no longer an activity that should be left to chance, rather is should be thoughtfully designed to gain all the benefits from your intellectual resources.