The following is an excerpt from “How Generational Differences Are Redefining Knowledge Management: A Look at Honeywell UOP’s KM Strategy.” You can download a copy of this exclusive white paper here.
Knowledge management (KM) strategy in the digital era has evolved with technology. Initially, the focus was on digitization of content and moving away from the restrictions associated with print. The vast majority of content is online now, and digital transformation is still underway, but we are entering a new phase. Content is embedded into so many aspects of day-to-day life that it is becoming an experience rather than a resource. Technology has fundamentally changed our relationship with content to the point where today’s businesses models are shaped around technology itself.
But as important as technology is, it cannot be the only aspect of a knowledge management strategy. An ideal approach considers the intersection of technology with both business and cultural trends impacting the organization. Imagine a new technology introduced to meet a pressing business need, but workplace and cultural trends mean more and more employees are working remotely. If the technology does not properly support employees’ ability to work outside the office, it may not matter how well it addresses the business needs.
Knowledge management is a comprehensive approach to strategically building and applying organizational knowledge to derive value. A key component of this approach is looking at generators of knowledge — people, their capabilities, and how to best develop those capabilities. Recruiting people with the right core skills and developing them is critical to the success of KM strategies. The more we understand about people, their preferences, drivers, goals and obstacles, the stronger our strategies will be. One way to do this is by examining our workforce across the generations.