Keywords: competitive advantage, corporate memory management, data management, data mining, electronic performance support system, explicit knowledge, knowledge management, knowledge warehousing, learning organisation, tacit knowledge
Corporate memory management: a knowledge management process model
Knowledge is the most meaningful resource today. The management of knowledge supports the competitive advantage of organisations. A survey conducted by Computer Science Corporation (CSC) found that senior IS executives perceive knowledge management to be among the most critical technologies that will drive business growth and innovation by the year 2000. It is widely claimed by a number of businesses and academic professionals that, in order for the organisation to have a lasting competitive advantage, it will have to be knowledge driven. Robert Hiebeler writes, "Those companies that develop best practices for managing knowledge capital will be the ones that ride this competitive wave". Drucker stated in his book, Post Capitalist Society, "The basic economic resource is no longer capital, nor natural resources. It is and will be knowledge". Ultimately, the knowledge that is most relevant is that required for the performance of critical organisation processes. One of the barriers to sharing knowledge, like data or information, across industries is finding a common language that promotes dialogue and exchange. Regardless of the industry or market, a common taxonomy allows one to commonly refer to the same type of work by the same name. This practice within knowledge management (KM) should accelerate the process of organisational learning. This article presents a model that can serve as a process framework of KM in the organisation. Each process discussed in this article includes work ("processes") that may be performed by organisations that deliberately manage knowledge. The present lack of effective management of knowledge could be because most organisations are still struggling to comprehend the KM concept. This KM process provides a foundation for an organisation to understand its knowledge resources and activities. Corporations around the world have identified the need for KM; however, they have not identified a taxonomy of processes or a vocabulary to communicate these processes. This paper addresses these two needs by providing a procedural method for creating a sustainable KM system.