Knowledge management has really made its mark upon the business world over the course of the last couple of years. At some point businesses started to realize that they were losing potential profits via their inability to centralize many of their processes and assets. In other words, they might have several areas of profitable interest running simultaneously and no one was trying to do the obvious thing – make them more cross-compatible. The basic idea is to take stock of all the ideas, thoughts, opinions, observations, experiences, and hard-won insights gathered by you and all your employees and use them to build a better enterprise – this is what knowledge management is all about.
As you might expect, there are a number of businesses out there which are major players when it comes to knowledge management, most of them being tech companies (no surprise there). Well, we’re about to explore some of the most important (or successful) names associated with knowledge management, but before we do that, let’s discuss knowledge management training for IT workers. Simply put, if you’re an IT professional and haven’t explored any type of certification in knowledge management up to this point, now would be a great time to do so. Businesses of all shapes and sizes are going to continue to push toward adopting knowledge management practices because they work; ergo, if you want to secure a good-looking future career outlook, perhaps this is an avenue worth exploring. Anyway, let’s get back to taking a closer look at some of the most important businesses within the knowledge management sphere. Note* – this is not a definitive list, more like a random sampling of important companies that have had success with knowledge management.
This shouldn’t be much of a surprise, really. Whatever you can think of, chances are, Google has someone working on it. In all reality, Google is the quintessential example of what a knowledge management strategy can do for a company; after all, they’ve basically built their entire business model around practices which are close or very nearly identical to it. In fact, one might argue that Google is performing knowledge management tasks for all of us via their search algorithm(s). Think about it, virtually everyone on Earth is dependent on Google in some way, shape or form, and their ability to keep everyone’s information organized and accessible is certainly contributing to the forward motion of our entire society.
Citrix is an international tech and software company that is helping to bring technologies like cloud computing into the mainstream. For them, knowledge management might have been seen as necessary considering that they’re pursing groundbreaking moves in both the cloud as well as in mobile technology. Companies like Citrix need knowledge management because most of the products and/or services which they are creating / providing are often complimentary or cross-compatible. If we’re talking about mobile tech and cloud computing, these areas can definitely influence one another. For instance, cloud computing services can be deployed on mobile devices. Likewise, cloud computing systems could collect large amounts of data (big data) from millions of mobile devices which would allow for predictive analysis, etc… In short, being able to manage one’s knowledge base can often lead to new breakthroughs.
One of the more highly visible businesses to adopt a knowledge management strategy is of course Hewlett-Packard. Much has already been written about their approach to knowledge management. However, it would seem that their overall strategy could be boiled down to 2 factors – 1.) creating processes for everything, and 2.) continuous problem solving. In essence, this could be what has catapulted them to success and allowed them to build one of the most envious knowledge management approaches out there.
A rather simple, yet elegant example of what knowledge management can do for a business is perfectly demonstrated by taking a look at BP. By adopting such things as videoconferencing and other advanced forms of communication technologies, BP has been able to greatly improve the speed and capacity they have for problem solving. In other words, this is a technology-assisted approach to knowledge management which allows organizations like this to combine their resources and solutions in near real-time.
Is knowledge management right for your company?
Regardless of what type of market you’re in or what your business actually does, chances are, there is one or more ways that knowledge management can work for you. At the end of the day it’s about combining strategies and looking for the “hidden possibilities” which exist. Most of the organizations that adopt KM often see results almost immediately too, that’s how powerful and useful it is. Similarly, if you’re an IT professional and want to imbue your future career prospects with some additional security, perhaps looking at certification in knowledge management isn’t a bad idea either.