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What is a knowledge management strategy?

Definition: Knowledge management strategy (KMS) is an organization's approach to capturing, managing, and using collective knowledge.

They are used to systematize how a business collects all of its knowledge from its departments, documentation, and operations to create a central hub of information that all employees can access and utilize.

The goal of KMS is to grow the business through the use of collective knowledge that grows over time and becomes a strategic asset.

Types of knowledge management strategies

A KMS can be classified as one of four types:

  • Structured focus on categorizing all the knowledge and creating a logical structure of where everything is stored and how it relates. They utilize knowledge databases and have strictly defined systems.
  • Unstructured doesn’t have a central knowledge hub but focuses on knowledge sharing throughout the business. They encourage informal knowledge sharing through the business's communication channels without a strict knowledge capture system.
  • Hybrid combines a structured and unstructured strategy by encouraging the knowledge-sharing aspect and having a system that captures informally shared knowledge. They utilize knowledge capture systems built into a business's communication channels.
  • Experiential involves capturing and processing past experiences into knowledge that can be used in the future. It focuses on situations within a business rather than documents or processes.

How to develop a knowledge management strategy?

There are eight steps needed to develop a KMS:

  • Identify the need for a KMS for a business and how it will add value. Is it to improve operations efficiency, to use it in onboarding, reduce costs, or create a market advantage?
  • Define measurable goals depending on why the KMS is being implemented and how much of an impact it will have.
  • Collect available knowledge from all departments and their documentation, procedures, and reports, giving you insight into what you are working with and your gaps.
  • Segment knowledge into different categories based on what each department needs and what is needed for each process.
  • Choose the software that will be used to create, collect, share, and manage all the knowledge.
  • Develop knowledge management processes for capturing, creating, storing, sharing, and using knowledge. This involves creating the KM database, documenting the workflow, and creating sharing channels.
  • Implement the KMS in the business by using an implementation roadmap outlining all the steps needed for the technology to be set up, the systems to be understood, and how the team will utilize the KMS.
  • Analyze the success of the KMS and take appropriate measures to improve the strategy with each new iteration.
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Article FAQs

Why is knowledge management strategy important?
It makes businesses more productive by spending less time looking for information. It leaves more room for innovation, helps teams make better decisions with collective knowledge, and lets them develop themselves faster.
What is a knowledge management strategy example?
Implementing a database of the best practices a support team uses in their process or a company wiki explaining every department and the documents they use. Another example is cheatsheets for certain tasks or process workflows.
What is KM strategy in knowledge management?
It’s a business’s plan to manage all the created and stored knowledge. It involves categorizing knowledge, sorting it, updating it, and building a system of sharing it with the appropriate personnel when needed.
What are the essential parts of a knowledge management system?
At the core of KMS are the people who are using it. They utilize knowledge creation and storage processes and manage them with knowledge management tools. For the KMS to work, the business must have a knowledge management culture.

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