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5 ways knowledge can add value to your business Thursday 13 Sep 2018

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Harnessing your organisation's potential: The foundations of knowledge management

Knowledge is a valuable resource that binds an organisation together. Knowledge governs how we make decisions, how we react to change and how we grow.

For enterprise, what an organisation ‘knows’ defines the standard of its operations. Capturing and having open access to organisational knowledge can create sustained competitive advantages by driving both performance and innovation.

If managed correctly, knowledge can become a company’s most valuable asset. It can be shared, retrieved, added to and utilised in perpetuity.

In our three-part article series, Foundations of Knowledge Management, our experts provide practical tips that can be applied in your business.

Our three-part series covers:

In the second instalment, we outline five ways that effective processes for knowledge capture, storage and retrieval can bring value to a business.


Five ways that capturing knowledge can bring value to your organisation

Knowledge is power. Shared knowledge is power multiplied” - Robert Noyce, Co-founder of Intel Corporation

Knowledge is increasingly being recognised as an organisation’s most valuable asset.

When appropriately captured, knowledge can be shared, retrieved and utilised by the business in perpetuity. If strategies to manage knowledge are created and implemented, this knowledge asset can be leveraged to create real cost and time efficiencies within organisations.

Five of the most significant impacts that effective knowledge management can have on an organisation are:

  1. Facilitating consistent decision making. With shared access to knowledge, organisations can make well-informed and data-based decisions. This means that mistakes are less likely to be repeated and that consistency in decision making is achieved. This ultimately translates to improvements in operations such as lower costs, enhanced productivity (e.g. less wastage, less downtime) and more consistent product quality.
  2. Upskilling employees more efficiently. Well-developed knowledge management processes allow anyone in the business to benefit from the knowledge and experience of the broader group. This can enhance the learning curve for new employees and reduce the risk of inefficiencies and knowledge loss that results from ‘staff churn’.
  3. Driving new product and service development and improvement. Knowledge in the form of lessons learnt from prior product/service development, when documented, can substantially shorten new development cycles. It can also help to provide an understanding of an organisation’s capabilities and identify opportunities for new product or service applications.
  4. Enabling flexibility in organisational structure. Capturing important operational knowledge removes the need to rely on the same specific staff being involved in specific tasks such as product development and presents opportunities to utilise knowledge inputs from different groups or individuals within the business, for the economic benefit of the group.
  5. Documenting activities for reporting and compliance. Well documented organisational knowledge can provide substantiation for a range of purposes including internal or external audits, tender applications, applications for grants and funding or to assist with accurate reporting to Boards and markets.

These are just a few of the ways that good knowledge management can help to achieve real efficiency improvement, cost reduction and competitive advantage in a business.

Our next article will discuss four elements of successful knowledge management that can help you to achieve these outcomes.

Contact our Knowledge Management experts to find out more about how we can help you leverage your knowledge inside your organisation.

Contributing authors: Matt McLean and Amy Jackson

Contact our advisory experts to identify new opportunities for your business