- Redefine the concept of knowledge, make it become tangible to manage
- Figure out enablers for KM success
- Build up a new reference framework for KM implementation
2. Literature Review
2.1. Perspectives of Knowledge
- “Ability” implies the availability of a human or computer processor with adequate competence to process the relevant information for the purpose.
- “Relevant information” includes the contextual information and the specific information related to the purpose.
- “Purpose” may be to find a solution to a problem, to make a decision on an issue, or to get an understanding or appreciation of a subject. Hereafter, without loss of generality, the term “problem” may also mean “issue”, or “subject”, depending on the context.
2.2. Classification and Presentation of Knowledge
- Organization of contents in K-objects is flexible and can be very comprehensive, thus K-objects can effectively encapsulate or represent knowledge.
- Because of the XML syntax, the content structure in K-objects can be validated by an XML parser. If the contents have been sufficiently marked up, they can be systematically processed by a computer.
2.3. Common Characteristics of Various KM Frameworks
- On understanding of “knowledge”: A uniform understanding of the term “knowledge” does not exist in KM frameworks. Dichotomies are most frequently used to describe the elements of knowledge, especially the distinction between implicit and explicit knowledge and between individual and collective knowledge.
- On KM activities: There are five most frequently mentioned broad categories of KM activities—share, create, apply, store and identify knowledge.
- On critical success factors of KM: Critical success factors of KM are human factors (culture, people and leadership), organizational aspects (structures and processes), and information technology as well as a management processes (strategy and control). A one-sided implementation of only one of these factors does not correspond to KM as a holistic effort.
3.1. A Reference KM Implementation Framework
3.1.1. Layer 1—Organizational Support for KM
- Pro-knowledge CEO: shapes the KM culture, allocates resources for KM initiatives, and shields the KM initiatives from political interference.
- Knowledge manager: provides vision, energy, and enthusiasm to translate the knowledge concept into reality.
- Pro-knowledge organizational culture: encourages employees to leverage knowledge for their work and share their knowledge with their colleagues .
- Pro-knowledge organizational structure: supports employee empowerment and facilitates knowledge sharing .
3.1.2. Layer 2—KM Support for Employees’ Knowledge Activities
3.1.3. Layer 3—Employees’ Knowledge Activities for Business Processes
3.2. Validation of the Reference KM Implementation Framework
3.2.1. Stage 1—Documentary Review
3.2.2. Stage 2—Cases Study
4. Research Findings and Discussion
4.1. Stage 1—Results of Documentary Review
4.1.1. Purpose of KM Implementation
4.1.2. Understanding of Knowledge
- Classification of knowledge: knowledge may be referred to as ‘‘know about,” and the latter as ‘‘know how”.
- Knowledge structure: Refers to the domain theory, knowledge acquisition, knowledge system design, system documentation, and knowledge exchange.
- Source management: This may include major and minor classifications, and the source varies with the business type and functional area.
- External schemata: It defines the characteristics of knowledge that is not only related to the content but also may be of use for further knowledge retention and access. The attributes include the person, subject, time, place, object, document serial number, main purpose, summary, content, language and so on.
4.1.3. KM Activities
4.1.4. KM Enablers
- Human perspective: For a KM project to be successful, the first step is to gain the support and commitment of top management to the initiative.
- Organizational perspective: For a KM initiative to be effective, it must fit into the organization’s missions and objectives. In addition, the organization also focuses on management activities. The government is a mechanistic hierarchy, and the KM initiative is intended to maximize administrative efficiency and increase the utilization and innovation of government information and knowledge to the public.
- IT architecture perspective: The perspective refers to the IT application for the capture, transformation and sharing of knowledge.
4.2. Stage 2—Results of Case Study Analysis
4.2.1. Purpose of KM Implementation
4.2.2. Understanding of Knowledge
4.2.3. KM Activities
- Stage 1—Identification (Create/Acquire): In this stage, management should define the knowledge concepts, “what knowledge is important for their organization” and “which departments keep and need this type of knowledge”. Knowledge workers start to collect related knowledge and put it the required forms. Knowledge is collected or created based on the position of knowledge workers. Employees are required to follow regulations related to documentation. Otherwise, K-objects cannot be created and KM systems get into trouble. To get the right answers, communication takes an important role in this phase.
- Stage 2—Management (Share/Store): In this stage, employees start to arrange K-objects in order based on task orientation since employees in different positions understand what they need and what they have in hand. Knowledge is also classified into different levels or set with access rights. Identify which information can be shared to whom. The Organization S manager suggests that knowledge should be classified into different levels: “We classify information/knowledge into three main types based on three levels of management—top, middle and operational. The knowledge workers in lower levels have no right to access information stored in higher levels. However, higher levels can see all the documents of his employees”. He also requires employees to share knowledge through formal KM platforms. Meanwhile in Organization P, over two years, the manager found that employees use Facebook instead of KM platforms to share knowledge since knowledge workers feel more free to share their minds. Both organizations point out that there are three main of groups people involved in knowledge sharing: experts, administrators, and users. If users are in charge of contributing knowledge objects, viewing and rating knowledge objects, experts have two more rights related to editing and approving knowledge objects. Administrators are responsible for editing and publishing K-objects (Figure 5).
- Stage 3—Implementation (Use/Update): In this stage, knowledge workers use completed knowledge to support their tasks. At the same time they can revise or update it. KM performance is also measured in this stage. For individuals, organizations can be based on number of pieces of content and number of times of access. For organizations, they can see the value through customer satisfaction and training time for new employees.
4.2.4. KM Enablers
4.3. Proposed Organizational KM Model
5. Conclusions and Implications
Conflicts of Interest
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