Knowledge Management (KM) and Organizational Efficiency

An overview of problems, misconceptions, and approaches that undermine the success of KM initiatives.

The concept of knowledge management (KM), while not new, has reached a higher profile of importance due to the advent of computer technology. Advances in hardware and software capabilities have enabled the practice of KM in an increasingly wide variety of organizations. Widespread acceptance and increased usage of KM seems inevitable as information has come to be valued as a marketable commodity. While the collection and storage of data may seem an innocuous, the specific types of information collected have increased along with the capacity and capability for data storage. This diversity of interest in information has sparked ethical concerns regarding data handling. This paper examines some of the industry-acknowledged problems inherent to the practice of KM and organizational efficiency.
“Common misconceptions regarding knowledge and the abilities of KM can also be misinterpreted by management, leading to a perceived decrease in the value of long-term employees. These unrealistic expectations for KM and the resulting misconceptions on behalf of employees or management indicate poor organizational efficiency and communication problems that organizations often fail to rectify prior to adopting a KM program.”