Knowledge management tools are important technologies being used to effectively implement the KM methodologies and principles. Most of these tools consist of software or computer applications that help companies systematize their knowledge management tasks. Other tools are documents templates and checklists which could be useful for making knowledge artifacts. Of course, for software and documentary inputs to work, solid knowledge management architecture is necessary. This includes databases, mainframes, and knowledge consoles.
Some of the most popular knowledge management tools are generally known as benefits tree. This is a stand alone application which could generate the benefits of KM to companies. Important data must be provided to the software which must include the needs assessment and knowledge gaps. The software then will calculate that overall benefits of KM and create a graphic presentation of rewards if knowledge management methodologies will be implemented. This is a useful application for building a business case for KM and important tool for justifying its deployment.
Another important KM tool is the knowledge checklist. This is useful for planning and conceptualization stage of knowledge management implementation. The checklist is usually a web based application and can be accessed through the website of KM consultancies. The KM checklist can be compared to a performance scorecard where important tasks will be identified. Managers then will have a concrete guide in the initial stage of KM implementation.
There are still many tools that can be used for knowledge management implementation. Some tools can be provided by KM consultancy firms as part of their services while others can be downloaded from the sites of KM software vendors. These tools are critical in order to ensure the success of KM implementation.