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I L T A W H I T E P A P E R | K N O W L E D G E M A N A G E M E N T & M A R K E T I N G T E C H N O L O G Y 30 If you ask a handful of people what KM means, you will likely get a variation of definitions. At its core, knowledge management is quite simply taking what one part of an organization knows and reusing it in another part of the organization. The larger the organization, the more likely it is that interaction is limited to a subset of colleagues within the firm. KM attempts to address this challenge by connecting people and teams in an attempt to reuse what others have already learned and utilize it in a different part of the organization. Adding value For organizations to be successful, the knowledge function should be designated as a core function of the business. This is particularly relevant in large or scaling companies, where the acquisition, distribution, and reuse of information becomes challenging. Knowledge management is a value-driven function. One should be able to measure the impact of knowledge departments in a quantifiable way. In this way, they should not be considered unique, and in fact, are the same as any other function we might measure within a professional services environment. There should be a direct or indirect link between the KM function's output and the firm's revenue. To the converted, the benefits of KM are apparent. However, as much of the impact is consequential and indirect, it is worth highlighting some benefits here: • Efficiency: reducing the need to start from a blank slate, or reinvent the wheel, allows for work product to be produced and delivered faster. • Quality control: setting a benchmark for acceptable standards - both from a content and branding perspective. This messages the requirement for consistently high quality regardless of geography, office, or practice. Especially relevant for globally dispersed businesses. • Diversification: leveraging the efficiency gains allows for greater creative space and more novel and radical ideas to develop. • Risk mitigation: removing the risk of repeating past mistakes and applying the lessons learned across the business. A changing role Today, a knowledge manager's role is versatile - they must exhibit what I refer to as broad specificity. There is an unquestionable requirement to understand general business issues, as well as specific user workflow challenges. Additionally, one must be aware of market offerings, everything from the latest changes to the DMS, specialized analytics tools, collaboration platforms, etc. "At its core, knowledge management is quite simply taking what one part of an organization knows and reusing it in another part of the organization."

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